Attorney General’s legal representation of Individuals

Likando Kalaluka

By MacDonald Chipenzi

Let me draw the nation to the constitutional mandate of the Attorney General of Zambia in accordance with Article 177 of the Republican constitution.

Under sub article (5) the constitution gives a description of who the Attorney-General is, “the chief legal adviser to the Government.” and not individuals.

Further, the constitution clearly outlines his/her main functions among them to—”represent the Government in civil proceedings to which Government is a party” and am not sure whether govt is part to the alleged misconduct of judges and the illegal stay of ministers in offices cases to attract the Attorney General’s legal services.

My trouble is how can the Attorney General who is supposed to be chief advisor to govt to now start representing the former and present ministers in likes of Kampyongo, Chitotela, Chishimba Kambwili, Greyford Monde, Siamunene among others who were directed by the courts to pay back the money given to them as salaries and allowances during their illegal stay in office?

My belief is that these are individuals and not govt and are supposed to hire private lawyers to argue their case against government which is supposed to demand the money from them.

But why is this interest in this matter for individuals instead of demanding people’s money from these former and present ministers, Sir Attorney General. Is your interest with govt money or individual interest. We need to investigate the real interest.

Another issue that need clarification is the Attorney General’s interest in the judges’ cases petitioned by citizens on alleged incompetence and misconduct during the presidential petition and are currently appearing before the Judicial Complaint Authority (JCC).

Again one expected that these judges will hire private lawyers, which they have done to defend their alleged incompetence and misconduct cases against citizens while the Attorney General represents the interest of the citizens who are up in arms with the judges. But to our surprise, the Attorney General is now representing the judges complementing private lawyers hired by the concerned judges.

It is amazing indeed that despite the judges doing the right thing to hire private lawyers in this case supposed to be respective judge(s) vs the people, the Attorney General instead, seem to be defending them before the JCC leaving citizens undefended. Is this correct and legal?

Surely, is the Attorney General in Order to abandon his constitutional duty, functions and work he is employed to do and become a private lawyer for private individuals and not govt and the citizens? What is HE trying to prove or trade in all these dealings? I need a serious ruling and clarification.


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