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Zimba, Lawrence Silas (1979) The Constitutional Protection of Fundamental Rights and Freedoms in Zambia: An Historical and Comparative Study. PhD thesis. SOAS University of London. DOI:

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This study examines the legal bases for the protection of human rights in the constitutional development of Zambia, and indicates how they have operated in practice. The approach adopted in discussing this subject is comparative in that the Zambian experiences and events are related to those that have taken place in other Commonwealth African countries, or indeed in any common law jurisdiction. The work is divided into four parts and consists of ten chapters. The idea that there must be some limits to the power of the state to interfere with man's rights is not new. Chapter One in Part I therefore traces the evolution of the idea of human rights as rooted in the theories of "natural law" and "natural rights". It also examines the influence and impact of international law on the development and spread of human rights throughout the world, not least in Africa. The doctrine of '"inalienable" human rights was borrowed by Africa from Europe and from America. Chapter Two discusses this theme and unfolds the avenues through which this doctrine found its way into the many independence constitutions of Africa. Chapter Three, on the other hand, examines the legal mechanisms through which human rights were protected and invaded during the colonial era before independence. The decision finally to incorporate a bill of rights in the self- government of Northern Rhodesia (now Zambia) was, as elsewhere in Africa, precipitated by certain active political, economic and social issues. Chapter Four discusses these. Part II opens with Chapter Five which examines the content and salient features of the Zambian Bill of Rights. Chapter Six examines the role played by the courts in the enforcement of the guaranteed rights. The nature of the conflict between the overriding needs of socio-economic development in an emergent state and the protection of property rights are analysed in Chapter Seven. In Part III, the question whether a one-party state constitutes a threat to human rights, and to democracy and to constitutionalism is discussed in Chapters Eight and Nine. Part IV concludes the work with Chapter Ten appraising the problems affecting the constitutional protection of human rights in Africa, and suggests some alternative modes for their protection.

Item Type: Theses (PhD)
SOAS Departments & Centres: SOAS Research Theses > Proquest
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 12 Oct 2020 17:19

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