Thieves pinch minister’s handbag at Mayela

Commerce minister Margaret Mwanakatwe

COMMERCE minister Margaret Mwanakatwe has narrated to the Lusaka Magistrates’ Court how her hand bag was stolen while she was socialising at Mayela night club last year.

In this matter, Mabvuto Banda, 19 and Solomon Mwanza, 30, are alleged to have stolen Mwanakatwe’s red hand bag which contained a purse, an I-phone, two diplomatic passports, an NRC, K9,700 cash, six by 10 Saudi Arabian notes, three by 10 Indian currency notes altogether valued at K28,850 from her Nissan Terrano on November 26, 2016.

Other items in the handbag included two Barclays ATM cards, two FNB ATM cards and a National Assembly identity card.

Testifying before magistrate Ireen Wishimanga yesterday, Mwanakatwe narrated that on the material day, she left home for Kalahari Pub and Grill with two men; Sydney Chongo and Lazarus Banda.

She further narrated that she was there for about ten minutes before proceeding to Mayela Night Club in Kalingalinga Compound.

The court heard that Mwanakatwe interacted with patrons in that bar while having a few drinks.

“After a few minutes, I went to the car, I wanted to get money from the hand bag in order to pay for the drinks then I discovered that my hand bag was missing,” she said.

Mwanakatwe told the court that she reported the matter to Woodlands police Station the same night.

She said the hand bag also had US$1,115 and that altogether the money and other items that were in the handbag were worth K57,000.

Another witness, Inspector Victor Mainza, 43, testified that someone who saw the accused person stealing the hand bag led the officers to him.

He said one of the accused persons led police officers to a pit latrine at a church in Libala where the hand bag had been dumped.

Mainza testified that he jointly charged the two with theft after they failed to give a satisfactory explanation as to why they were in possession of some of the bag’s contents.

The matter comes up for ruling on February 3.

         

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