Wither Rule of Law

Tue, 08 Jan 2013 13:41:09 +0000

 What is happening to the rule of law in this country? On 28th December 2012 Judge Lisimba of the Ndola High Court ruled that the appointment of Andrew Kamanga as Chief Executive of Zambezi Portland Cement was null and void.

That ruling has been ignored. Kamanga has not only assumed office but has dismissed a number of officers including the lawyers representing Board members who have been deported. Kamanga’s appointment was made by an emergency “Board meeting” chaired by Dr. Rajan Mahtani in the absence of the deported Directors namely Antonio Ventriglia, Claudio Ventriiglia and Manuela Sebastinia who were declared as prohibited immigrants by the Government.

It was argued that according to section 209 of the companies act at least half of the Directors of the Company including the Managing Director were required to be resident in Zambia. Was it by chance that government deported the other directors?

Political intransigence

There is something about political power which turns ordinarily humble and self effacing people into tyrants who have no sensitivity, care or indeed empathy with the suffering of their citizens. This is true of Syria where the United Nations estimates that more than 60,000 people have been killed in the uprising, which began in March 2011.

This is an armed conflict that seems to have no end in sight. What started off as a civilian and un-armed demand for political reform quickly escalated into an armed rebellion that has now become a virtual war drawing combatants from various shades of the extremist fringe. Lethal arms including modern jets, tanks and mines meant for external wars have been turned on citizens.

Whole towns have been decimated and thousands are flowing into neighboring countries seeking refuge, their lives will never be the same again. And when the world expected President Assad to offer a reconciliatory statement, he was as belligerent as ever denouncing his opponents as “puppets of the West” and “enemies of God “. He said Syria wanted to negotiate with the “master not the servants”.

He used an address to a partisan crowd in the Damascus Opera House to denounce his opponents and espouse a unilateral plan for resolving the war; a plan which he knew would go nowhere as the opponents were not included. The reaction from the world community was immediate. The European Union has called on Assad “to step aside and allow for a political transition”.

In the same vein the State Department in the United States observed that President Assad was detached from reality, but was determined to hold on to power whatever the cost to his people and his country. This is what power does. It blinds people to reality, who then begin to believe in their own invincibility.

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