FORMER First Lady Esther Lungu has submitted in court that the 15 flats the State wants to forfeit on grounds of being proceeds of crime are registered in her names but are matrimonial properties.
Mrs Lungu further submits that the houses in question were developed by her husband, Edgar Lungu, the former President.
“I wish to state that the aforesaid properties registered in my name are in fact matrimonial properties which information was also conveyed to the said deponent [the Drug Enforcement Commission] investigation officer and that these properties were developed by my husband,” the documents read in part.
This is contained in a court document in which Mrs Lungu is responding to notice of motion in which the Director of Public Prosecutions seeks to have 15 flats belonging to her repossessed for being tainted as suspected proceeds of crime.
The application by the DPP has been filed before the Economic and Financial Crimes Court.
Opposing the notice, Mrs Lungu submits that she is duly registered proprietor and interested part in relation to the properties no.9334/1,9334/2 and 9334/4 in Lusaka on which the 15 flats are located.
Mrs Lungu submits that notice of motion alleges that the properties in question are allegedly reasonably suspected to be from proceeds of crime but she strongly disputes the allegations because the land was acquired through lease and investigators were informed.
She details how she was summoned and interviewed in connection with the alleged tainted properties in issue.
Mrs Lungu submits that on July 26 ,2022, Drug Enforcement Commission(DEC) summoned her and she went to their offices where the deponent, Emmanuel Khondowe, a senior investigations officer interviewed her.
She adds that she informed Mr Khondowe that the said properties were acquired by herself by way of direct lease from the Commissioner of Lands.
“The said properties were acquired by way of direct lease and that was made known to the said deponent [Mr Khondowe], which has however been deliberately excluded from the contents in the affidavit in support of the said notice of motion” Mrs Lungu submits.
“That I verily believe that the deponent is not an expert witness that is neither qualified as an auditor to gather financial information, analyse the said financial information and make conclusions deductions or indeed rendered opinion as to my income or expenditure or variation thereof in the absence of such qualifications and in the absence of proper financial audit,” the document reads.
Mrs Lungu also says it is a well-known facts that she was Zambia’s First Lady being married to former President Edgar Lungu and that prior to becoming the First Lady, she worked for the Zambia Council for the Blind and Handicapped, the Christian Council of Zambia under the United National High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) for Refugee counseling services.
She also submits that she also worked for the Legal Services Corporation;Lusulo and Company; Toplis and Harding Insurance Loss Adjusters; and Independent Insurance Loss Adjusters.
“Upon retirement from formal employment, I was involved in NGOs which enabled me to travel internationally to exhibit and sell Zambian products in liaison with the Zambia Development Agency where I realized some finances.
She adds that “As First Lady of Zambia, I earned allowances from both local and foreign travel. I verily believe that I personally informed the said deponent of the said source of income that I had acquired both during the said period and the period prior to the said investigations, which the deponent has deliberately omitted as can be seen from the contents[ of the court documents]”.
Mrs Lungu further submits that the properties registered in her name are, in fact, matrimonial properties and that this information was conveyed to investigation officer Mr Khondowe, who was also told that these same were developed Mr Lungu, her husband.
“I verily believe that all this information having been made available to the deponent herein, was information that ought to have been disclosed and made known to the court, which I verily believe was deliberately excluded in an attempt to mislead this court so as to support the deponent’s unfounded allegations that the properties are either proceeds of crime or tainted properties,” she submits.
Mrs Lungu further submits that the applicant has failed to state or give particulars of the alleged serious offence or foreign serious offence or unlawful activity either associated with herself or any of the properties listed in the application.
“The deponent has failed to demonstrate with sufficient evidence that the properties in issue are either tainted properties or proceeds of crime or any evidence upon which the court can reasonably infer that the said properties are either tainted properties or proceeds of crime”.
She also regrets that after the August 2021, presidential elections, the former First family has been actively targeted by a number of law enforcement agencies and falsely accused of criminal activities.
“It is evident that the proceedings herein are yet another attempt to label and target myself and my family through baseless accusations, with no proper evidence or mere speculations and unfounded allegations. It is my constitutionally guaranteed right to be presumed innocent until proven guilty,” Mrs Lungu submits.
(Mwebantu, Thursday, 27th July, 2023)
PF Secretary General Nakachinda involved in a road traffic accident
PATRIOTIC Front (PF) Secretary General Raphael Nakachinda has been involved in Road Traffic Accident after the vehicle he was driving was hit into by a locomotive.
This happened when Mr Nakachinda who whilst driving an Isuzu vehicle failed to give way to a locomotive hence his vehicle was hit into.
Police spokesperson Rae Hamoonga said the incident occurred today around midnight along the Great North Road at Shikoswe railway crossing.
“Involved was Raphael Mangani Nakachinda aged 45 of house number 1794 Inkanga area of Kafue District who was driving an Isuzu registration number BAH 8695 from North to South who sustained bruised left πarm ,bruised back of the neck , bruised left ear and painful left leg, whilst the vehicle incurred a shattered front windscreen, extensively damaged right side body, rear passenger’s door and both rear lights,” he said.
He said also involved was Vincent Mabinda aged 45 of unknown house number a driver of a Goods Train from west to east direction which had no damages.
“The accident happened when Mr. Raphael Nakachinda who whilst driving an Isuzu vehicle failed to give way to a locomotive hence his vehicle was hit into by an on-coming Locomotive which had the right of way,” he said.
Mr Hamoonga said the accused has since been charged for the offence of Careless driving and his vehicle impounded at the Police station.
(Mwebantu, Saturday, 2nd December, 2023)
I am ready to risk my life to save the PF, says Edgar Lungu
“I AM ready for anything, including risking my own life to save the Patriotic Front (PF),” Former republican President Edgar Lungu has said.
Mr Lungu says victory is certain and that the machinations by the ruling United Party for National Development (UPND) in form of ‘Imingalato’ will not stop him.
He has also noted that he is aware that the next move by the UPND is to lift his immunity, but he is ready and not worried about the outcome.
Speaking when he addressed the media on a number or issues, he said that he did not intend to get back into active politics, but he did so to ensure that PF lives on.
He noted that this was from the backdrop of the machinations from Government to steal, kill and destroy the PF in order to continue their stay in power.
“The machinations became more when those in power wanted to state a coup in PF using their stooges. They were illegally endorsed by police, followed by the National Assembly to swot democracy. This becoming more vivid when the victim who in this case is the PF is treated as a villian and a state sponsored sect is being given protection by the law,” he said.
Mr Lungu claimed that unfortunately, for those in power, it is not possible to submerge the PF in an attempt of using ‘Imingalato.’
“In this regard, I made a call to all opposition s as to defend Zambia’s hard earned democracy. I called for unity of purpose and today I am humbled for the unanimous response. Victory is certain, we shall certainly defeat those scheming against democracy,” he said.
He further claimed that he came back into politics to save the PF from being stolen of killed by the government.
“I am aware the next move is to lift my immunity from prosection. This does not worry me. It is another ploy to divert people from their failure, ” he said.
(Mwebantu, Friday, 1st December, 2023)
‘Imbwili’ jailed for hate speech
OPPOSITION Patriotic Front (PF) member of the Central Committee and former Roan Member of Parliament Chishimba Kambwili has been handed a five-month prison sentence for hate speech by Kasama Magistrate’s Court.
In this case, Kambwili, 54, of house number 9, Wisteria Avenue, Luanshya was charged with the offence of expressing hatred and ridicule of the persons based on tribe and place of origin.
Kasama Resident Magistrate Samson Mumba found Kambwili after the prosecution proved its case beyond reasonable doubts.
And in mitigation, Kambwili who spoke through his lawyer told court that he was a first offender, a family man and a person who previously served the nation as a cabinet minister.
He also urged the court to take into consideration his health.
In sentencing Kambwili, Magistrate Mumba said he took into account the mitigation.
He however said he sentenced Kambwili to five months imprisonment to deter would be offenders.
Meanwhile, after judgement was passed, Kambwili’s lawyer Kaizara Tembo told journalists his client will appeal against the verdict.
“Currently we are making efforts to lodge in an application for bail pending appeal,” he said.
Kambwili has since been transported to Milima Correctional Facility in Kasama.
(Mwebantu, Thursday, 30th November, 2023)