Ministry of Education Legal Counsel Explains Basis of Development of Statutory Instrument

The Legal Counsel for the Ministry of Education outlined the basis for the development of the Statutory Instrument by the Ministry, noting that the process was the creation of Law.

The Ministry’s Legal Counsel, Mr. Joseph Lange, Esq., said this in Mpika, Muchinga Province, on 23rd March, 2022, during a nationwide sensitisation and consultation workshop that was aimed at representatives of Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) from Muchinga, Luapula, Northern and Central Provinces.

“The starting point of developing the Statutory Instrument is the Constitution Chapter 1 of the Laws of Zambia, with Article 62 providing for the establishment of Parliament,” Mr. Lange said, adding, “then Article 63 provides for Parliament to enact legislation through Bills, whilst Article 67 provides for statutory instruments.”

Mr. Lange stated that Article 67 provides for Parliament to confer power on a person or Authority to make statutory instruments. He further explained that it was from Article 67 where Section 52 of the Higher Education Act No. 4 of 2013 gets its power from by providing for regulations.

“Section 52 of the Higher Education Act No. 4 of 2013 provides for the Minister, in consultation with the Authority, by statutory instrument, make regulations providing for, amongst others, the standard requirements for higher education institutions regarding the quality of higher education to be provided,” he said.

The Legal Counsel explained that the regulations are provided for by Law which should be through the statutory instrument.

“The workshop is supported by Law and it is the Law which we are making,” Mr. Lange concluded.

Prof. Stephen Simukanga (standing), HEA Director-General and chair of the workshop, delivers opening remarks in the presence of the media. Seated (L-R): Dr. Vitalicy Chifwepa, HEA Director – Quality Assurance; Mr. Gabriel Mwamba from the Business Regulatory Review Agency; and, Mr. Joseph Lange, Esq., Legal Counsel in the Ministry of Education.

HEA has been holding these nationwide workshops since 1st March, 2022, when it held its first series of workshops in Lusaka for the purpose of sensitising HEIs on the Higher Education (Amendment) Act, 2021, and consulting them on the draft Statutory Instrument and Regulatory Impact Assessment.

The Mpika-workshop was the 3rd in a total of 5 series of workshops. HEA will hold a 4th workshop in Livingstone, Southern Province for representatives of HEIs from Southern and Western Provinces from 11th to 14th April, 2022. The Authority will conclude these workshops with a 5th workshop for Professional and Regulatory Bodies.

The Higher Education (Amendment) Act, 2021, has expanded the Authority’s mandate and, as such, HEA has embarked on these sensitisation workshops in order to inform all the HEIs on the status quo of the higher education subsector as a result of the Amendment Act.

Furthermore, the Higher Education (Amendment) Act, 2021, has brought colleges that were previously regulated by other bodies under the oversight of the Authority. Thus, HEA is using these series of workshops to sensitise these colleges about the its mandate and operations.

Additionally, the Regulatory Impact Assessment analysed the challenges that required to be addressed by the Statutory Instrument and why Government action was needed.

Members of the workshop listen to the Director-General’s opening remarks.