YALI proposes creation of Electoral Court for faster disposal of petitions

Electoral Commission of Zambia

The Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI) has proposed the creation of an Electoral Court that should enable faster disposal of electoral petitions in the country.

YALI’s proposal comes in the wake of prolonged conclusion of electoral cases in the country’s courts with about 8 outstanding national assembly by-elections being put on hold after the nullification of the Kasenengwa, Malambo, Mkushi South, Mulobezi, Petauke, Solwezi Central, Vubwi and Zambezi West Parliamentary seats.

YALI governance advisor Isaac Mwanza says the Electoral Court should be the equal of the High Court and headed by a qualified Judge.

Mr. Mwanza further suggests that in addition to being headed by a qualified judge as is the case with the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) the Electoral Court should also include other stakeholders such as the Church who should sit together with the ECZ to handle electoral petitions.

He says his organization particularly appeals to Justice Minister Wynter Kabimba to push forth this proposal during the time in which the Commission of Inquiry on Judicial Reforms is conducting its work.

The YALI governance advisor has told Qfm news that if an Electoral Court was to be created after amending the current laws the time for disposing of electoral petitions will be cut short as his organization proposes that this court should be able to conclude electoral petitions within 90 days.