July 28, 2007

High Court nullifies Ndola central polls

The Ndola High Court has nullified the election result of Patriotic Front (PF) Ndola Central constituency member of Parliament (MP), Mark Mushili, on grounds that he contravened the Electoral Code of Conduct by orchestrating a scheme to buy voters. Losing MMD candidate, Mary Zambezi, has challenged the election of Mushili after the tripartite elections in September 2006. According to Judge Munalula Lisimba, the petitioner had proved seven of the 15 grounds on which the petition was based. It had been proved that Mushili had himself or through his known agents bribed and treated would-be voters. The court heard that during the run-up to the elections, Mushili held meetings at different localities in Twapia, Hillcrest, Chipulukusu and Kansenshi townships where he distributed cash and feted would-be voters. He had also published false statements about Ms Zambezi, calling her a prostitute.
"The first respondent committed the illegal act of publishing false statements. In our society, calling a woman a prostitute is tantamount to social debasement and hints at irresponsibility, which was destructive for a woman vying for an elective position," the judge Lisimba said. (The Times of Zambia, Ndola)

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