Lungu cheers FODEP over ICC

Mon, 13 Feb 2017 07:50:13 +0000

By Andrew MUKOMA

CONSULTATION with the Zambian people on whether to leave the International Criminal Court (ICC) is paramount as President Edgar Lungu has indicated and shows that the Head of State respects the Constitution and the will of the people, the Foundation for Democratic Process (FODEP) has observed.

FODEP executive director Chimfwembe Mweenge said that President Lungu should be commended for deciding to respect the Constitution by deciding to consult with the Zambians before making a decision of the ICC.

He explained in an interview with Daily Nation that the Constitutions required that the President should consult with the people through Parliament before making national decisions.

Mr Mweenge pointed out that the Head of State also had powers to decide on behalf of the Zambian people but that it was commendable for him to put the Constitution first.

He reiterated that President Lungu had proved to the nation that he respected the Constitution and the will of the people.

Mr Mweenge said that people who were insinuating that it was not important to consult the ZambianS on whether to stay or leave ICC should be condemned by all law abiding citizens.

“It is constitutional that whenever international instruments are ratified, the people through Parliament have to deliberate on it. Consultation with the Zambian people is very paramount, you just can’t withdraw without consulting. The President’s stance should be commended and it shows he understands the importance of the Constitution,” Mr Mweenge said.

Mr Mweenge stressed the need to analyse all the advantages and the disadvantages associated with being a member of the ICC before making a decision.

Meanwhile, United Party for National Development (UPND) leader Hakainde Hichilema said that there was no need to pull out from the ICC nor consult with the Zambian people.

But Zambia Direct Democracy Movement (ZDDM) vice president Charles Kafumbo said that membership to the ICC was totally unnecessary because the country had its own judicial system.

Mr Kafumbo reiterated that it was high time Africans rejected being controlled by westerners and took control of their own affairs.

He pointed out that the whites had, in the past, committed a lot of atrocities but that no one had been able to hold them accountable. And FODEP in Livingstone has said the approach by President Edgar Lungu to choose consultations as a way to come with a clear position on whether Zambia should withdraw its membership from International Criminal Court (ICC) of Justice or not should be commended.

FODEP Livingstone district chairperson Gideon Musonda said his organisation strongly felt that people should be widely consulted on whether Zambia should withdraw its membership from the ICC.

Mr Musonda said in a statement yesterday that democracy demanded the involvement of people in governance of national affairs. “There is no doubt that the objectives of ICC are very good but how it is currently conducting its business towards the African continent is what is questionable. There is need to critically analyse the effectiveness, objectives and activities of ICC against its perceived biasness,” he said. Mr Musonda said there was need to take a study on countries where conviction had been made by ICC and its impact on the victims of crime against humanity and the nation at large. “FODEP would like to advise all African countries to strengthen their own institutions of governance such as the courts of justice in order to resolve their own issues instead of rushing to outside courts.

“FODEP has been participating in African Peer Review Mechanism. While we appreciate the initiative and President’s intention to use it for soliciting people’s views on ICC, we wish to make a strong appeal to Government that it should expand its outreach programs through public and community forums and other platforms.


Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button