LAWYERS representing NDC leader Chishimba Kambwili in a case he is charged with contempt of court have asked the Lusaka Magistrates’ Court to summon EEP leader Chilufya Tayali to show cause why he should not be sent to prison for contempt of court for allegedly commenting on the matter.
And Lusaka magistrate Nsunge Chanda has set December 10, this year for a ruling on whether Kambwili has a case or no case to answer in the matter, after the arresting officer concluded his testimony.
This is a matter in which Kambwili is charged with contempt of court for allegedly tampering with evidence in relation to Mwamona Engineering and Technical Services Limited at Patents and Companies Registration Agency, which was a subject in the case before Magistrate David Simusamba.
Kambwili has since been convicted and sentenced to one year imprisonment for forgery and uttering a false document by Magistrate Simusamba in the said matter.
In this matter, it is alleged that Kambwili on March 6, 2018 in Lusaka, caused an obstruction or disturbance in the course of judicial proceedings by lodging documents at PACRA to alter the details and records of Mwamona Engineering and Technical Services which were subject of active judicial proceedings.
It is further alleged that the changes made were particulars of the two directors namely; Mwamba Chishimba and Carol Chansa, of which Mwamba Chishimba was changed to Mwamba Kambwili and Carol Chansa to Carol Chansa Chipande.
Previously, the arresting officer, Stanley Mumbula, had testified before magistrate Chanda that he could have been portrayed as having given false information to the court due to the alleged changes which were made to the particulars of Mwamona Engineering and Technical Services’ directors while Kambwili’s forgery case was still active.
But when the matter came up for cross examination of the witness before magistrate Chanda, Tuesday, Mumbula said there was no change of documents at PACRA before March 6, 2018.
The arresting officer also agreed that magistrate Simusamba dealt with the case before amendments to the incorporation document were lodged on March 6, 2018.
Mumbula further admitted that magistrate Simusamba was only supposed to deal with incidences before that period and that was what the court did.
When asked by one of the defence lawyers, Keith Mweemba whether what he was saying was that there was nothing that could amount to contempt of court before March 6, 2018, Mumbula said yes.
When told that it was lawful to alter details of directors at any stage, Mumbula responded in the affirmative and further agreed that it was a fact that Kambwili was not a director or shareholder in Mwamona.
Earlier, the defence lawyers had asked the court to summon Tayali to show cause why he should not be sent to prison for contempt of court, following a press conference he held where he commented on this matter and on Kambwili’s conviction.
Mweemba said Tayali had been committing contempt on numerous occasions and they had tolerated him.
He added that it was very clear that Tayali had taken them for granted.
Mweemba said Tayali had been commenting on the matter, casting aspersions that Kambwili was going to be jailed.
He told the court Tayali said that whether Kambwili likes it or not, he was going to be convicted before magistrate Chanda because he changed documents at PACRA.
Mweemba said Tayali had undermined the authority of the court by rendering public opinion on the matter which
was active in court.
“I want to put it on record that he has gone too far, both the lawyers and the court have capacity to deal with him. Its very clear that Tayali has no respect for this honourable court,” Mweemba said.
“This is a proper case for the court to summon Mr Tayali, to issue summons for him to come and show cause why he should not be cited for contempt of court for undermining the authority of this court.”
Another defence lawyer, Christopher Mundia said Tayali’s conduct was an outrageous attempt to undermine the authority of the court by giving calculated statements to the public.
He said as of yesterday, the video had been viewed by 43,000 people on his (Tayali’s) Facebook page to the effect that this court would definitely convict the accused.
Magistrate Chanda said arrangements would be made to view the said video before she makes a ruling.
Meanwhile, the court has set December 10, this year as date for ruling on case or no case to answer.
Magistrate Chanda directed the defence to file their written submissions before the ruling date.
State advocate Mukumi Chipawa indicated that the prosecution would rely on evidence on record.