-Defecting MPs face challenge

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Defecting MPs face challenge
Lusaka, April 15, 2013, ZANIS…………….. The National Constitution
Convention has introduced a new provision under article 75 to create a
caveat against unnecessary by-elections.

The new provision has been effected so that a member of Parliament who resigns  shall be

barred from re-contesting the seat or being appointed to any public office until
the end of the life span of that parliament from which the member has

And the convention has amended clause (2) of article 75 providing for a
mixed member proportional representation which is a mix of
First-past-the post and proportional representation with 20 percent seats
assigned to proportional representation instead of the Proportional
Representation (PR) as stated in the draft constitution.

The convention has also adopted the 50+1 vote clause which provides
that a winning candidate in a presidential election should receive not
less than fifty percent plus one vote of the valid votes cast.

In adopting the clause, the delegates noted that the new electoral
system will enhance the legitimacy of the elected president and reduce
regionalism and further promote interparty dialogue in the case of a

Meanwhile, amidst high levels of unemployment in Zambia, the ongoing
National Constitution Convention has resolved to retain the labour
relations article in the First Draft Constitution that provides rights
of citizens to employment and to fair labour practices.

According to both Kasempa MMD Member of Parliament Kabinga Pande and his counterpart
UPND’s Request Muntanga of Kalomo , the clause will empower unemployed citizens to sue
government for not providing them with employment which they said
should be avoided by amending the clause.

The two parliamentarians contended that Governments world over are
facing the challenge of unemployment and therefore proposed that the
clause be amended to specify the type of employment the clause was
referring to.

Mr. Muntanga who earlier succeeded in having the recommendations for
amendment for article 64 which read that, ‘a person has a right to
work ‘deleted to maintain what is provided in the draft explained that
even clause (1) of article 65 has a similar meaning.

His proposal to have the article amended was only supported by his
fellow MP Kainga Pande while the rest voted for the retention of the