A State witness has admitted in the Lusaka Magistrates’ Court that the ‘seditious document’, which was allegedly found in the possession of suspended Lusaka lawyer Martha Mushipe, was downloaded from the Zambian Watchdog.
Arthur Shonga, a Zambia Police Senior Superintendent, who led a team that went to search Mushipe’s law firm, further admitted that the police had to-date not arrested anyone running the Zambian Watchdog in relation to the alleged ‘seditious document’.
This is in a matter in which Mushipe is charged with seditious practice.
Mushipe is alleged to have on unknown dates, but between July 1, 2015, and April 11, 2016, in Lusaka, jointly and whilst acting together with other persons unknown and without lawful excuse, had in her possession seditious material namely “Strategy of domination, PF against opposition UPND 2015, 2016 and beyond – UPND at crossroads – transition or conflict/PF’s use of ethnic divide and rules as a means of maintaining political control in Zambia 2015-2016 and beyond” by General Tendai Muduli, Dr Ngosa Simbyakula and Dydmus Mutasa.
Former Bulletin and Record Magazine journalist Charles Mafa had previously testified that he came in possession of the alleged ‘seditious document’ in February, 2015, way before Mushipe had it.
Mafa said it was scary that some of the issues highlighted in the same document detailing how PF had planned to use violence, tribal division, among other things, to win the 2016 elections, had actually come to pass.
The matter came up before Lusaka Magistrate Felix Kaoma, Monday, for continued trial.
And during cross-examination by Mushipe’s lawyers Keith Mweemba and Gilbert Phiri, Shonga admitted that the said document was downloaded from the Zambian Watchdog, adding that no one running the website had been arrested in connection with the document to-date.
Like Mafa, Shonga also agreed that for some reason, some of the things, which were alleged in the document like the closure of the Post Newspaper and the brief closure of MUVI TV, had equally come to pass.
Shonga agreed that anyone could download the document from the Zambian Watchdog website.
Trial continues on May 13, 2019.