Mwenye grills IDC boss in court, as he insists Siame’s conduct was unreasonable

Former Attorney General Musa Mwenye last week grilled Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) chief executive officer Mateyo Kaluba, as he admitted that his witness testimony was riddled with errors, in a case where former executive director Paul Siame sued the Corporation for illegal termination of contract.

But Kaluba and another IDC witness narrated to the court how Siame exhibited “Unreasonable conduct” in his last days working for the corporation.

In this case, IDC is represented by Lubinda Linyama of Eric Silwamba and Company while Mwenye, State Counsel, of Mwenye & Mwitwa Advocates, as well as Mwape Bwalya State Counsel, are representing Siame.

Below is the verbatim of continued hearing on September 10, 2018.

Linyama: Witness tell the court your full names.

Witness: I’m Christopher Lufuna.

Linyama: What’s your occupation?

Lufuna: I’m a driver/ office assistant at IDC.

Linyama: How long have you been at IDC?

Lufuna: Since 2016.

Linyama: In summary, can you tell the court what your duties are? 

Lufuna: I deliver letters and I also drive the staff. 

Linyama: You are in court on the matter which has been brought here by Mr Paul Siame, could you please tell the court what you know regarding this matter which is in court? 

Lufuna: On September 16, 2016, I was assigned to deliver letters to Mr Siame and Mr Mate. I delivered the letters at Mr Siame’s home and I met Mr Mate at a mall.

Linyama: Where were these letters from? 

Lufuna: The letters where from the office. I was given this assignment to deliver the letters to these two by the secretary of the company.

Linyama: Continue…

Lufuna: Then on October 14, 2016 upon arriving at Mr Siame’s office, I entered the office, I found Mr Siame there with miss Claire Banda, the late. Then I greeted him. He told me that ‘even you I will fire you! You are the one who brought the letter to me!’ After he told me that he will fire me, I told him that ‘no boss for me I just delivered the letter and I didn’t know what was inside’. A few days later, he told me not to work and to hand in the cars keys to the PA. He told me that I shouldn’t work, I shouldn’t do any job until I give him a written report of the people who sent me to deliver a letter to him. 

Linyama: So you were told to hand over the keys to the Personal Assistant. What transpired?

Lufuna: I handed the keys to the PA. Then I stayed for two days. Then I wrote a report and handed it to him. Then I stayed for two or three days without working. 

Linyama: After those two days elapsed, what transpired?

Lufuna: I was just reporting for work. I would just report and sit without doing my duties. 

Linyama: Would you know where this report is, the one you tendered? 

Lufuna: I gave it to Mr Siame.

Linyama: In terms of hierarchy at the place of work, what was Mr Siame’s position?

Lufuna: He was executive director.

Linyama: How did you come back to start performing your duties?

Lufuna: Late Claire went to Mr Siame’s office and told him that we don’t have a driver. I don’t know what transpired at the office but I was just given the keys by the late Claire. 

Linyama: Is there anything else that you wish to add to your testimony? 

Lufuna: Yes I would say that Mr Siame was using a language which was not okay when he came back from suspension. He was using bad language towards the CEO. And he was telling everyone to say ‘whoever was involved in this I will fire him!’

Linyama: When you say ‘whoever is involved in this’ what do you mean?

Lufuna: Whoever was involved, at his office, or whoever was involved in delivering letters, was going to be fired. 

Linyama: Is that all you have to say? 

Lufuna: Yes.

Linyama: I have no further questions your honour. 

Cross examination

Counsel Musa Mwenye: Morning Mr Lufuna.

Lufuna: Morning.

Mwenye: Earlier in examination in chief, you told the court that you delivered the letter to Mr Siame’s house, remember?

Lufuna: Yes. 

Mwenye: What time did you deliver? 

Lufuna: 21:30hrs.

Mwenye: Now, have you ever given any statement or evidence to any disciplinary tribunal over the words that you said Mr Siame said? 

Lufuna: No. 

Mwenye: Do you know a man called Mr Chipwende?

Lufuna: Yes.
 
Mwenye: Did you give Mr Chipwende any statement?

Lufuna: No. 

Mwenye: Mr Lufuna, you mentioned that you were given back the keys, you recall that? 

Lufuna: Yes.

Mwenye: You also told the court that the late Claire Banda went to tell Mr Siame that there were no other drivers. You recall that? 

Lufuna: Yes.

Mwenye: Were you there when they were talking?
 
Lufuna: No.

Mwenye: So you have no way of knowing what was discussed between them, is that correct?

Lufuna: Yes.

Mwenye: Mr Lufuna you were the one who was ferrying para-military officers to secure the IDC offices and Mr Chipwende’s home. Is that correct? 

Lufuna: Not IDC offices but Mr Chipwende’s home.

Mwenye: Didn’t you at any time ferry officers to keep Mr Siame out of the office?

Lufuna: No.

Mwenye: No further questions your honour.
 
Judge Edward Musona: Thanks witness.

Linyama: Obliged your honour, that’s the last witness. Maybe just for the record, that will be all in regard with the first respondent. However in terms of proceeding further SC would like to address… 

Judge Musona: We are told that’s all for the first respondent. Before SC comes in, may we hear if the other respondents are calling witnesses? 

Mwenye: My lord, my learned brother, Mr Linyama was very deliberate when he said that he has no further witnesses. The reason is that last week, immediately after the last sitting in this matter, I engaged my learned brother, and indicated that if Mr Mateyo Kaluba was not being called as a witness by the first respondent, we will request that he be made available for cross examination. My lord, the affidavit verifying answer, which was filed into court on September 29, 2017 was sworn by Mr Kaluba. The exhibits in this affidavit have been relied upon heavily by the first respondent. In the ordinary course of things My Lord, we had hoped that he would in fact be the first witness on behalf of the first respondent. But we appreciate my lord, that every party has the right to conduct the case as it deems fit. My lord the affidavit is on record and we have not tested the evidence in this affidavit. My lord, rule 64 of the Industrial Relations Court rules, states that ‘evidence shall be given orally’. Unfortunately my lord, details from this affidavit have entered the court record and unless the first respondent wishes to abandon this affidavit, we would apply pursuant to rule 62 of the Industrial Court rules, to cross examine Mr Mateyo Kaluba, the deponent. Our prayer is that this application is granted. My lord, if Mr Kaluba is before court, we are prepared to conduct cross examination. 

Linyama: My lord, I do confirm that State Counsel engaged me last week. I stated to State Counsel that I would need to seek guidance from my client. We had agreed that if our position was different from the desired position by the complainant, let’s see who will make a formal application. I agree entirely with State Counsel when he argued that parties have a right to cross examine the deponent of an affidavit. I wish to add that when State Counsel indicated to me that he is making an application before you, I thought we would invoke rule 33 of the rules of this court which is explicit when it states that any application or any orders sort to this court, must be by notice of letter. My lord with that said, our submission is that in exercising this right that is being sort by the complainant, they should move this court in writing and the court will consider the application and give the desired directions. 

Mwenye: My Lord, the rule is very clear that interlocutory application are to be made by notice and we are now in trial. The applicable rule which we are relying on is rule 62 under part nine of the rules under the banner heading, ‘evidence and procedure in the court”. My lord there’s no need to delay this matter any further. This is a matter of evidence.
 
Judge Musona: Since the Counsel engaged each other last week, not withstanding rule 33 and 62, both counsel are aware of this pending application. Learned counsel for the first respondent, I have heard him but I need to be guided. Apart from the argument that that should have been done by written notice, I need to know if learned counsel for the first respondent will have an objection to that application? If he will have an objection, perhaps we shall examine whether or not to follow rule 33. If there will be no objection, then there will be no need even to go further to cross examine rule 33. That’s the importance of establishing whether there will be an objection or not. 

Linyama: Obliged my lord. Like I indicated, I will seek my client’s instructions. Unfortunately at this stage I cannot commit my client. But given what has been raised, we say that an application is filed in, in the pending days to come, I can engage state counsel.

Musona: We last met on September 3, and that’s when both counsels engaged each other. And it was already known that the matter was coming today, September 10. Counsel, may I be educated, is there any reason why those instructions could not be obtained earlier than this morning because you are now saying that the instructions are yet to be obtained this afternoon. But it was well known that the matter is coming this morning. 

Linyama: The officer instructing me will only get back to the office today. The officer was outside jurisdiction. Hence we did not have the position to observe the law. I wrote to my client immediately we received Mr Mwenye’s desire to, but unfortunately I could not obtain those instructions as early as possible. They will only get back to the office today.

Judge Musona: I’m against delaying matters. Matters should not be delayed. This matter was filed on February 8, 2017, we are now in September 2018. The law says ‘in this division the matter should be concluded within 12 months from the date it is filed’ and by simple calculation we are beyond 12 months. So we should not continue breaking the law. I note that both counsel agree that they engaged each other last week after the adjournment. The record shows that the adjournment was on September 3, this year. Today is September 10, indeed there was enough time for the first respondent to obtain the necessary instructions. The excuse that the instructing client was not in the country is not tenable because the first respondent is not an individual but a company. We are aware of those other officers present. In the interest of justice I will give counsel for the first respondent an option. To either have the matter adjourned to 12 hours today and bring in that witness or I proceed to expunge that affidavit from the record.

Linyama: Certainly my lord I have to get instructions from my client. 

Musona: So 12 hours. We are adjourning this matter to 12:00 hours today. Not 12:01hours.

Matter adjourned at 10:34 hours.

Court resumes at 12:00 hours…

Linyama: Obeying your order that you gave this morning, the deponent of the affidavit, Mr Kaluba is before this court. Mr Kaluba please tell the court your full names.  

Kaluba: My names are Mateyo Chresta Kaluba.

Linyama: How old are you? 
 
Kaluba: I’m 43 years old. 

Linyama: What’s your residential address?

Kaluba:…Plot number 6566 Mumana road, Olympia.
 
Linyama: What do you do for a living?
 
Kaluba: I’m CEO at IDC. 

Linyama: When did you take up that appointment? 

Kaluba: I took up the appointment by acting capacity in November 2016 and in substantive [employment] in August 2017.

Linyama: What are some of your duties as CEO at IDC?
 
Kaluba: I superintend over the day to day operations and I supervise the staff of IDC. 

Linyama: Mr Kaluba, you are aware of this matter. Do you recall signing any documents relating to this matter?

Kaluba: I signed an affidavit verifying answer. 

Linyama: My lord I wish to refer this witness to an affidavit verifying answer dated September 29, last year. Please look at that document and show the court where you said you signed.
 
Kaluba: (Shows the court…)

Linyama: My Lord, at this stage we wish to put on record that we are relying entirely on the affidavit filed by Mr Kaluba. And at this stage it may be subjected to cross examination. 

Cross examination 

Mwenye: Good afternoon Mr Kaluba?
 
Kaluba: Good afternoon.

Mwenye: I’m going to give you a copy of your affidavit… Let’s start with paragraph five, please read it up.

Kaluba: (…the complainant was on Friday September 17, 2016 requested by a committee of the respondent’s board to stay away from the office together with other executive directors in order for the board to resolve wrangles that had emerged at the top level of the company.)

Mwenye: Mr Kaluba, this is a small calendar of 2016. What day was September 17, 2016?

Kaluba: It was a Saturday. 

Mwenye: So September 17, 2016 was a Saturday and not a Friday as stated in the affidavit? 

Kaluba: Yes.

Mwenye: Did you lie Mr Kaluba?
 
Kaluba: No I didn’t. It was probably an error on the dates. 

Mwenye: So your evidence in this aspect is factually incorrect?

Kaluba: Your honour I accept there was an error on the date. 

Mwenye: In that paragraph you also said that the board asked the complainant to stay away from the office in order to resolve wrangles that had emerged at the top level of the company. Do you recall that the letter written to Mr Siame had any such statement in it?

Kaluba: I don’t recall. 

Mwenye: Have you ever seen the letter?

Kaluba: I may have your honour but I don’t recall. 

Mwenye: My lord PMS3 in the affidavit in support filed on February 8, 2017. You have seen that document?
 
Kaluba: Yes.

Mwenye: Have you ever seen it before?

Kaluba: I have seen it before.

Mwenye: Please read it. 

Kaluba: (…You are directed to keep away from IDC offices and from performing any IDC duties which you were assigned to do by virtue of appointment. This directive is with immediate effect.) 

Mwenye: In that letter, is any reason given for the directive?
 
Kaluba: From what I can see, the reason is not given. 

Mwenye: Is there any use of the word suspension in that letter? 

Kaluba: The directive is to stay away from work. 

Mwenye: You are the CEO now and obviously you know the procedure of discipline at the IDC. When you look at that letter, is that a letter of suspension, yes or no?

Kaluba: No. 

Mwenye: Is there any procedure for just asking an employee to stay away without suspending him? 

Kaluba: I do not know exactly what procedure was used in this case. 

Mwenye: Listen to my question very carefully. So that I’m fair to you, the question is, to the best of your knowledge, is there any procedure in the IDC to just ask employees to stay away?

Kaluba: Your honour we have a disciplinary code now which was not the case before…

Mwenye: Turn to paragraph six of your affidavit and read it out please.
 
Kaluba: (…That the respondent will further aver that the complainant and other executive directors were directed to stay away from work as they had opted not to sign the renewed contract rendering them to be employees at sufferance.)

Mwenye: Your evidence in this paragraph is that the complainant was asked to stay away because he hadn’t signed this contract of employment. Is that correct? 

Kaluba: That is correct. 

Mwenye: My lord I’m referring the witness to PMS3 in the affidavit in support. You said that letter was written because the contracts of employment were not signed. What’s the date of that letter? 

Kaluba: September 16, 2016.

Mwenye: Please turn to PMS1, contract of employment. Who were the parties? 

Kaluba: IDC and Mr Paul Siame.
 
Mwenye: What’s the date of the contract?

Kaluba: January 11, 2016.

Mwenye: Now, in view of the fact that you have a signed contract that was dated January 11, 2016, is it true that the complainant was asked to stay away because he hadn’t signed the contract of service and was therefore an employee at sufferance as you said it? Is that true. 

Kaluba: I can’t tell. If it’s the date of the contract yes it’s true, but was it signed on this date? I don’t know.
 
Mwenye: So, according to the date on that contract that you have, is it true, the reason given for asking the complainant to stay away? 

Kaluba: I can’t speak on behalf of the committee. 

Mwenye: I need you to answer that question, I ask it to you again. From that contract which no one from IDC has disputed dated January 11, 2016, are the reasons given for asking Mr Siame to stay away from the office valid? 

Kaluba: Based on what’s stated. The dates of the contract, no. 

Mwenye: Let’s turn to paragraph seven, could you read it out? 

Kaluba: (… that on or about Monday September 18, 2016, the complainant not withstanding being asked to stay away from the place of work, proceeded to report for work and engaged into an altercation with the officers deployed to secure the respondent’s premises.) 

Mwenye: You have a calender in front of you, could you tell us when the day September 18, 2016 was?

Kaluba: It was a Sunday.

Mwenye: Mr Kaluba did you lie that Monday was September 18, 2016?

Kaluba: No I didn’t lie it was an error. 

Mwenye: So paragraph seven is erroneous? 

Kaluba: It had an error indeed.

Mwenye: With regard to paragraph eight, you told the court that the complainant was asked to stay away but in total disregard, he issued a press statement. Now, was there anything wrong with that considering that he was not on suspension? 

Kaluba: This was unacceptable conduct.

Mwenye: Mr Kaluba did the statement that he issued prejudice IDC in any way?
 
Kaluba: The complaint is that he was not authorized.
 
Mwenye: Listen to the question we will make progress faster. The question is very simple, I believe you are highly educated and intelligent man. The question is, did the statement you are complaining about prejudice IDC in any way?

Kaluba: I’m not in a position to answer to that. The CEO at the time may be in the position. 

Mwenye: Are you aware that Mr Siame was appointed to be part of the speech writing committee for the President’s speech by the secretary to the cabinet on May 5, 2016?

Kaluba: No I’m not aware.
 
Mwenye: Are you also aware that because that presidential speech had something about Mulungushi Textiles, the Secretary to the Cabinet is the one who instructed Mr Siame to respond to the press query?

Kaluba: I’m not aware.

Mwenye: Now, Mr Kaluba in paragraph nine you said that the complainant was charged with the offence of insubordination. And this was done on October 31, 2016. Can you confirm that on the date that he was charged, fell several months after he was asked to stay away from the office?

Kaluba: Five, six weeks later. 

Mwenye: When did the offences for which he was charged occur?
 
Kaluba: I’m not sure.
 
Mwenye: My lord I’m referring the witness to MCK3. Please look at MCK3…

Kaluba: The letter says that on October 17, 2016.

Mwenye: So I will ask you again. In view of the letter charging Mr Siame, when did the offences for which he was charged with occur? 

Kaluba: October 17, 2016.

Mwenye: Can you to also confirm that this was several weeks after he was asked to stay away?
 
Kaluba: Yes I can confirm.

Mwenye: Paragraph 10…You said that on or about October 14, 2016, when you were serving as interim director corporate planning at IDC, you received a call from the complainant where he told you never to set foot at IDC premises or else he will physically harm you which led to a situation where you performed your duties away from the office for fear of being beaten. This is what you said. You recall that? 

Kaluba: Yes. 

Mwenye: Now, who was the substantive interim director corporate planning? 

Kaluba: I was.

Mwenye: What was Mr Mate’s position? 

Kaluba: He was executive director corporate. 

Mwenye: Did you have an office at the IDC at this time?
 
Kaluba: At this time I had been given an office.

Mwenye: When were you appointed interim director?

Kaluba: After the two executive directors were asked to stay away from the office. Mr Chipwende asked me to sit in while they were away. 

Mwenye: So Mr Chipwende asked for you to come to replace the two directors who had left? 

Kaluba: To sit in. 

Mwenye: To sit in for them?

Kaluba: While they were away. 

Mwenye: So Mr Chipwende asked for you to come in as interim director while Mr Mate and the complainant were away correct? 

Kaluba: Correct. 

Mwenye: So, you were asked to act for administrative convenience while they were away?
 
Kaluba: I was asked to bring in extra skill and labour while they were away. 

Mwenye: Are you aware that Mr Mate and the complainant were reinstated on October 14, 2016?

Kaluba: I was informed of that. 

Mwenye: So you were aware that they were reinstated on that day. You said that you were just there to fill in while they were away, what was wrong with asking you to leave after they had come back? 

Kaluba: He had no power to do that.
 
Mwenye: So your substantive position was at the Ministry of Commerce correct?

Kaluba: Yes. 

Mwenye: When you were appointed interim director, did you occupy Mr Mate’s office?

Kaluba: No, I was given a very different office.

Mwenye: Did you ever attend any disciplinary hearings against the complainant over this issue over that he called you to threaten you?

Kaluba: No.

Mwenye: So he was never charged with this issue?

Kaluba: Not to my knowledge.

Mwenye: Now in paragraph 11, you tabulate what you call the threats and incidence against the complainant. In paragraph 11A, you mention that on October 14, 2016, the complainant threatened Ms Rumbizai Mutasa who was acting company secretary and indicated that he would fire her. Where is she?

Kaluba: She’s currently working at Zambia Industrial Commercial Bank.

Mwenye: She’s in a position to testify in this matter but never testified correct? 

Kaluba: I can not speak on her behalf.

Mwenye: Was the complainant charged with this issue? 

Kaluba: No. 

Mwenye: So this incidence there were no charges against him? Were you there when this alleged conversation occurred?

Kaluba: I was not there. I relied on interviews. 

Mwenye: 11B, you said during the said period, the complainant forcibly gained access to the office of the CEO and collected unknown documents without seeking any further authorization or consent. Were you there when this alleged incidence occurred?

Kaluba: I was not there.

Mwenye: Who was CEO at the time of this alleged incidence?

Kaluba: Mr Chipwende.

Mwenye: Are you aware that Mr Chipwende was before this court and that he never mentioned this incident in his evidence?
 
Kaluba: I’m aware that Mr Chipwende was before this court but I’m not aware that he never mentioned this incidence.
 
Mwenye: Paragraph 11C, you said he forcibly gained access through the IT specialist Mr Lwatula to all electronic information including confidential email correspondence. Where is Mr Lwatula?
 
Kaluba: He’s at IDC.

Mwenye: Were you physically present?

Kaluba: I was not. I relied on interviews 

Mwenye: You said in 11D that upon being served with a letter of termination, the complainant proceeded to shred company documents in the presence of his subordinates. Were you physically present?

Kaluba: I was not physically present, I relied on interviews.

Mwenye: Do you know what kind of documents was shredded?

Kaluba: No I don’t.

Mwenye: Is it a disciplinary offence to shred documents?

Kaluba: If he was shredding personal documents it’s not an offence. 

Mwenye: Paragraph 13… that the complainant failed or neglected to answer in the disciplinary charge laid upon him and consequently the respondent proceeded to terminate his contract of employment by a letter dated November 11, 2016. Were you involved in any of these proceedings? 

Kaluba: I was not involved. 

Mwenye: At the time the letter of termination was being written, did the Minister of Finance or the secretary to the treasury consult you?

Kaluba: I was not.

Mwenye: My lord I’m referring the witness to a letter of termination of contract signed by the Minister of Finance and the Secretary to the Treasury. Look at it carefully, is there any reason given for the complainant’s termination of services?

Kaluba: No reason was given.
 
Mwenye: These events happened between June and November, 2016, is that correct?

Kaluba: I should think so. 

Mwenye: Were you part of the top management team at the time?

Kaluba: I was not.

Mwenye: Wouldn’t you agree with me that in fact your affidavit is full of hearsay, matters that you didn’t know personally? Because you were not part of these proceedings?

Kaluba: I was not part of these proceedings your honour.

Mwenye: Since you have spoken authoritatively about the termination of the complainant’s services, why were the services of Mr Chipwende terminated?

Kaluba: I’m not aware.

Mwenye: Let’s turn to something that happened while you were CEO. You took over as CEO after Mr Chipwende left on November 11, 2016 right? When is pay day in the IDC?

Kaluba: 20 or 21st.

Mwenye: I’m referring the witness to exhibit PMS1 in the affidavit in support. That’s the contract between the complainant and the first respondent. Read out clause 7.2.

Kaluba: (…Salary shall be paid by 21st of every month…)

Mwenye: So the complainant’s pay day was on the 21st of every month. That word ‘paid in arrears’, wouldn’t you agree with me that it means that he’s paid from the 20th of the previous month to the 21st of the month in which he’s paid? 

Kaluba: Yes.
 
Mwenye: I’m referring the witness to the respondent’s bundle of documents, particularly on page three. Mr Kaluba, that document is the schedule of payments for the complainant’s terminal pay. You know it? 

Kaluba: Yes.

Mwenye: You approved payments made under this?

Kaluba: Yes I did. 

Mwenye: Mr Siame’s contract was terminated on November 11, 2016, you recall that? 

Kaluba: Yes.

Mwenye: Wouldn’t you agree with me that he should have been paid his salary from October 22 to November 11? According to his contract, his pay day is 21st.

Kaluba: He should have been paid from his last pay day to the date of termination.

Mwenye: He should have been paid from the date of his last pay day to the date of his termination. According to the contract of employment, when was his pay day in October?

Kaluba: It was supposed to be 21st.

Mwenye: Please look at page three of the respondent’s bundle of documents. My simple calculation was that there’s more than nine days from October 21 to November 11. Why was Mr Siame only paid for nine days? 

Kaluba: Your honour this computation was made by experts in human capital and I relied on their expertise. I believe this is what was due to him.

Mwenye: I put it to you that he should have been paid for 16 days but was only paid for nine days, what do you say to that? 

Kaluba: I will rely on the expertise of my staff.

Mwenye: I further put it to you that Mr Siame should have been paid K96,116.36 instead of the K54,000 he was paid, what do you say about that?
 
Kaluba: I will rely on the expertise of the institution. 

Mwenye: You said you rely on your expertise of your experts, isn’t it true that you are the one who wrote to Mr Siame communicating the computation of terminal benefits and net book value of the vehicle? 

Kaluba: I believe it was me.

Mwenye: It was you?

Kaluba: Yes. 

Mwenye: I have no further questions. 

Judge Musona: Counsel has no further questions anything in re-examination?

Linyama: My lord, the Attorney General must also be given an opportunity. 

Attorney General: My lord I no further questions. 

Re-examination 

Linyama: Mr Kaluba, you were referred to a letter where the complainant was charged with insubordination. Could you look at it there…The charge which is there relates to events with what date? 

Kaluba: Events of October 17, 2016.

Linyama: You can also confirm that the report that you were given, when you said you conducted interviews, those form the date of the charge? 

Kaluba: Yes.

Linyama: Could you kindly tell the court, you were taken to task that, was there anything wrong with you being asked to leave the company when the substantive office holder came in? The question that was out to you was why didn’t you leave? You tried to clarify to say the letter you received for you to take up those positions, came from the CEO. Clarify, why didn’t you leave when Mr Siame instructed you to leave IDC?
 
Kaluba: Because the instructions in my view should have come from CEO of the institution to whom I was reporting.
 
Linyama: You stated in cross examination that when you received a call from Mr Siame you were with Mr Chipwende. What exactly were you told in this call?

Mwenye: Objection there was nothing about him being with Mr Chipwende that issue never arose…

Linyama: I can rephrase the question for the sake of progress. Paragraph 10, you said you received a call on October 14, from the complainant. What exactly did he tell you? 

Kaluba: He called from an office line, he said ‘I have noticed that you have been given an office…I’m telling you to stay away from the IDC for your own good. Andrew has told you that you are important here, I’m telling you that you are not needed here. I better not see you…’

Linyama: You were taken to task in terms of particulars in paragraph 11 and you were being asked that the events you did not perceive them yourself personally but your answer was that you conducted interview. Can you tell the court how this information came to you? 

Kaluba: When we conducted interviews with staff that were privy with what was happening at the time, and based on the information given to us during those interviews, that’s the basis on which I submitted my affidavit. 

Linyama: There was a suggestion made to you that you were in occupation of Mr Mate’s office. Can you please clarify whose office you occupied when you were interim director? 

Kaluba: The office that was given to me was an office that was occupied by Mr Kabanje who was an analyst. That was the office which was prepared for me. 

Linyama: You were referred to the letter of termination of employment. You were asked whether you were privy to the circumstances in which that letter was written. Could you please clarify to the court, the persons who communicated the decision to the complainant?

Kaluba: The letter was signed by the Minister of Finance honourable Felix Mutati and Secretary to the Treasury Mr Fredson Yamba, in their capacity as shareholders of IDC.

Linyama: You were also referred to the respondent’s bundle of documents in particular page three, which is the document the computation for the complainant’s entitlements upon termination. There was a question put to you on the value of the motor vehicle. Could you tell the court how you ended up writing that letter?

Kaluba: I relied on the computation made by the accountant in determining the value.

Linyama: Can you confirm to the court that in computing what the complainant was entitled to, regard was taken to the value of the motor vehicle that he was given?

Kaluba: Yes I can confirm.

Linyama: You were taken to look at Clause 7.2, which is the contract of employment by the complainant. I would like you to look through that document, is there anywhere where it shows the date in which it was signed?

Kaluba: No. 

Linyama: You were asked questions in terms of Mr Siame’s entitlements and computation that that he should have been paid from October 22 up to the date of his termination of employment and you answered that very well that you relied on the computation of your experts. Could you tell the court if this 7.2 was taken in account of in computing?

Kaluba: Yes it was taken into account.

Linyama: You were taken to task on the issue of staying away and suspension. Could you please look at Mr Lawrence Sikutwa’s letter, where the complainant was being asked to stay away from employment. What’s the date of that letter?

Kaluba: September 16, 2016.

Linyama: Who gave the directive according to that letter for the complainant to stay away from employment?

Kaluba: The finance and administration committee.

Linyama: And you recall in cross examination you were taken into task that during this period when the office directive was in place, there was a newspaper article where the complainant was quoted. You recall being asked whether you were aware that the complainant was permitted to give that statement by the secretary to the cabinet?

Kaluba: Yes I recall. 

         

Zondiwe Mbewe

About Zondiwe Mbewe

Zondiwe is a vibrant young Zambian journalist who has interest in writing political and current affairs on issues which affect every Zambians. She draws inspiration from journalists who stand for what is right and are not afraid to tell and show the truth to the people.
Email: zondiwe [at] diggers [dot] news

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