A critical analysis of ''common design''doctrine in Zambia
Phiri, Jeremiah A.
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This research was aimed at identifying problems that are associated with the doctrine of common design especially where the criminal liability elements of mens rea and actus reus are concerned. The doctrine of the common design imputes criminal liability on all the parties to a criminal enterprise. Accessories despite them not directly intending and actually committing a crime are held responsible for a crime as though they actually committed the crime in question. The problem that arises herein is how to reconcile the criminal liability principles of mens rea and actus reus into the doctrine of common design where one who does not commit the actus reus is held liable as though he actually committed the act that resulted into the crime. The research has been conducted through analyzing different pieces of literature, statutes and cases. Through desk research, this research essay has revealed that the Zambian legal system and other legal systems which were studied, apply the doctrine in a similar manner where every party to a crime is held liable for the same offense without defining precisely the mens rea and actus reus of each participant. Different literature has revealed that the doctrine is applied such that criminal liability is imputed on everyone despite the levels of participation in crime. It has also been found out that the applicability of the doctrine is very complex and complicated. This research has concluded that it is an anomaly that the liability of an accessory should be dependent on the principal's elements of criminal liability, that is, the actus reus and the mens rea. Therefore, it has been recommended that liability of an accessory and that of the principal should be separated. It has been further suggested that the principle under this doctrine should be simplified, and that other studies that surround group crimes should be undertaken. vi ABSTRACT Owing to a number of disease outbreaks in the past years which has had a serious effect on the country's economy due to ineffectiveness ways of implementation of the laws governing animal health in the country. The government from 1996 embarked on reviewing the regulations to come up when news laws that will encompasses modern problems. The Animal Health was enacted in the year 2010 to repeal and replace the Stock Disease Act of 1961. The focus of this dissertation is to evaluate the laws regulating animal health in the recent past. There has been a problem of unfettered powers of the Director and the government not awarding compensation to the livestock farmers whose livestock has been slaughtered. These farmers lose their only means of livelihood without being compensated. The constitution under Article 16 provides for compensation if the government takes away their property. In instances where it is granted, it is either less than the value of the animal or the process of determination is inappropriate. The dissertation tries to assess the feasibility of the government awarding it to farmers. The methodology that was used was primary information which was obtained from interviews with various stakeholders and also secondary information from the internet. It was found that under the Act, there has been a problem of policy making by the policy-makers which does not reflect the aspiration of the people and also lacked guidelines on how to implement them. There is no provision on how to award compensation, further some of the provisions under the Act created confusion on who is to perform which function. Due to the fact that the majority of the population is illiterate, there is no initiative to educate them by the government. This has been a major setback to the implementers in controlling or eradicating the notifiable disease in the country.
- Law