The Lusaka Magistrates’ Court has acquitted 10 UPND cadres of riotus behavior charges saying police provoked them by tear-gassing them.
Lubinda Simonda and nine others were arrested on December 15, 2016 after the presidential election petition when they went to show solidarity to their leader Hakainde Hichilema and his vice Geoffrey Bwalya Mwamba.
Magistrate Nthandose Chabala set free all the accused persons free due to failure by the prosecution to prove a case against the cadres.
She said there was no evidence to warrant her to place the cadres on their defense.
The court said police were the ones who provoked the cadres by tear-gassing them which lead to the fracas
She said no one saw any of the accused destroying property at the High Court adding that the arresting officer was not even at the premises when the incident happened.
Judiciary adminstrator Kelgin Limbani had claimed in his testimony that the cadres overpowered the police officers at the courts whilst Judiciary chief administration officer Nalishebo Imata also based her evidence on hearsay as she was not present during the confusion.
In this case Lubinda Simonda, 35, Namasiku Kalaluka, 21, Dereck Sikakando, 22, Philemon Mbewe, 64, Emmanuel Malilwe, 24, Ackim Bote, 56, Alfred Habene, 64, Progress Simubali, 45, Nyambe Nalikena, 21 and Chipo Sichimu were charged with riotous behaviour.