Lusaka, 11 June, 2020 / 2:04 am (ACI Africa).
Bishops in the Southern Africa nation of Zambia have called on the country’s Members of Parliament (MPs) to consider withdrawing the Constitutional Amendment Bill of 2019 also known as Bill 10 from the floor of the House saying it does not reflect the constitutional desires of a majority of the citizens.
“While Bill 10 may contain some progressive clauses, it also contains some retrogressive and highly contentious issues such as the provision for Deputy Ministers, proposed changes in the electoral system regarding mayors, council chairpersons, Members of Parliament and the President, and the proposed revision of the composition of Cabinet,” the Bishops say in their collective statement issued Tuesday, June 9.
The Bishops make their “earnest appeal to the conscience of all Members of Parliament across the political divide to respect the will of the majority of Zambians and immediately withdraw the said Bill 10 from the floor of the House.”
The call to withdraw Bill 10 is “encouraged by the realization of many Zambians, that the said Bill in its current form does not reflect the constitutional desires of the majority of Zambians,” the Bishops explain in their statement signed by the President of the Zambia Conference of Catholic Bishops (ZCCB), Bishop George Zumaire Lungu.
“We firmly believe that any legitimate process of making, reviewing and amending the supreme law of the land ought to be premised on a process that is widely inclusive, transparent, accountable and anchored on consensus-building rather than partisan interests,” the Bishops add.