LAWYER’S representing President Michael Sata in a matter in which he has sued the Daily Nation newspaper for defamation of character, have asked the court to dismiss an application by Lusaka lawyer, Vincent Malambo to join the defence team.
Mr Sata has charged that Mr Malambo could not join the defence team because he has no interest in the case.
This is in a matter in which Mr Sata has sued Daily Nation proprietor, Richard Sakala and University of Zambia (UNZA) lecturer, Choolwe Beyani over an article published on May 16, 16, 2012 entitled “Malambo’s removal criminal”.
Mr Malambo has applied before Lusaka High Court Judge, Florence Lengalenga for an order for joinder of party stating Mr Sata injured his feelings when he testified before court that he could have been dismissed because of incompetence.
Mr Malambo was dropped from representing Development Bank of Zambia (DBZ) in the matter in which the bank had sued defunct Zambian Airways and its directors.
But Mr Sata’s lawyers Messers Ellis and Company have in their skeleton of arguments in opposition to Mr Malambo’s summons asked the court to dismiss Mr Malambo’s request.
Mr Sata said that it was clear that Mr Malambo has no interest in the matter because the action before court is centered on the article published by Dr Beyani and the Daily Nation.
He said that there is nothing in the article that would prejudice and cause Mr Malambo to suffer professional injury and personal integrity.
“On the contrary the article prima facie injures the plaintiff, Messrs. Fred M’membe, Mutembo Nchito, and Nchima Nchito” Mr Sata said.
Mr Sata further contended that Mr Malambo could not rely on words or statement attributed to him when he was giving evidence to apply for a joinder, as such, statements were not actionable.
“Statements made by a witness/party in court during the course of judicial proceedings are not actionable, and can therefore not be the basis of an application for joinder as there is no likelihood of future litigation” he said.
“It is our submission that the applicant herein has not demonstrated his interest in the subject matter of this action” Mr Sata said.
Mr Sata said that Order XIV of the High Court clearly states that a person who is not a party to the action can only be made a plaintiff or defendant adding that nowhere in his affidavit in support of the summons for joinder does Mr Malambo allege that any words in the article entitled “Malambo’s removal criminal” are defamatory of, or have injured him in any way.
The matter comes up for hearing of the joinder application today.