A Problem of Immunity

From Zambian Economist Wed Nov 28 2012, 18:25:00

By Chola Mukanga

The First Draft Constitution provides specific provisions on presidential immunity. Article 96 states: (1) Civil proceedings shall not be instituted or continued against the President, or a person who is performing the executive functions, in respect of anything done, or omitted to be done; and, (2) The President, or a person performing the executive functions, subject to clause (6), shall be immune from criminal proceedings.

Parts (3) - (8) provides further detail relating to ex-presidents, including the possibility of Parliament lifting immunity after a two-thirds vote. These provisions of course are largely in line with the current Constitution with minor alterations. The bottom line is that all sitting presidents are immune from civil and criminal proceedings. Ex-presidents are permanently immune until parliament decides otherwise.

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