An arresting officer has testified that he charged and arrested Chishimba Kambwili with forgery after discovering that some documents relating to Mwamona Engineering Technical Services purported to have been signed by his son Mwamba, had the accused’s signatures.

This is the matter in which Kambwili is charged with three counts of forgery and giving false information to a public officer.

Detective Chief Inspector Stanley Mumbula from Lusaka Division was testifying before magistrate David Simusamba, Thursday.

The matter was initially scheduled for mention and fixing of trial dates but proceeded into trial after the State informed the court that they were ready with one witness.

“This matter was initially agreed by the State and defence that it will be coming up for mention and fixing of trial dates but looking at how long the matter has taken and that the State is ready with its witness, with the indulgence of this court we ask for guidance so that we can make progress,” the State informed the court.

Despite the defence objecting to this, magistrate Simusamba guided that the State should proceed to trial since they were ready.

And when Mumbula was called to the stand, he testified that on October 28, 2017, he received a complaint from Economic and Equity party president Chilufya Tayali that there was a company named Mwamona Engineering and Technical Services which was not properly registered.

He said Tayai further alleged that Kambwili was signing some documents as director for Mwamona, when in fact not.

The witness said acting on the information, he instituted his investigations in the matter.

Mumbula said during his investigations, he visited PACRA and requested for files for Mwamona, adding that after going through the files, he discovered that there were two directors of Mwamona namely, Carol Chansa and Mwamba Chishimba.

The officer said the documents indicated that Chansa was holder of NRC number is 235023/66/1 while Mwamba’s was 239643/68/1.

Mumbula said when he perused the files, he noticed that documents like a “no change return” where purported to have been signed by Mwamba, when they were in fact signed by Kambwili.

“Going through the file, I discovered that there were two directors by the names of Carol Chansa, holder of NRC number 235023/66/1 and Mwamba Chishimba, holder of NRC number 239643/68/1. I further looked through the file and discovered that amongst the documents, there there was a company’s form 71 of no change return for the year 2012-2013 which was signed by Mwamba Chishimba as the one signing the return,” he said.

“In the same file, I also noticed that there was a police report which was obtained by honourable Chishimba Kambwili in 2007 indicating that he had lost his documents for Mwamoma being the certificate of incorporation, certificate of share capital and other documents.”

Mambula said further investigations revealed that the NRC used by Mwamba during the registration of Mwamona, belonged to Sampa, who was Kambwili’s sister.

“I subjected the two NRC numbers to the National, Registration, Passport and Citizenship where I requested to know the true identity of the owners of the NRCs. I got the results where it was indicated that NRC number 239643/68/1 belongs to Sampa Kambwili who was born in 1983 whilst 235023/66/1 belongs to Carol Chansa,” he said.

“I extended my investigations to locate who this Sampa Kambwili is. I went to Kitwe where I discovered that Sampa Kambwili was a teacher and that she was the sister to honourable Chishimba Kambwili.”

He said when he subjected all the documents relating to Mwamona to handwriting experts, it was discovered that all the writings purported to have been signed by Mwamba where actually signed by Kambwili.

Mambula added that the handwriting expert observed strong similarities.

“Having gathered all this evidence, I summoned honourable Chishimba Kambwili to the police station so that he can be interviewed in connection to the allegations. He was later on arrested and charged with three counts of forgery and giving false information to a public officer. Under warn and caution in English, he gave a free and voluntary reply denying all three counts. I later on released him on police bond to appear before this court,” the witness testified.

However, when tendering the said documents into evidence, the defence objected on grounds that they were not original documents and that the State did not lay a proper foundation for their submission.

Magistrate Simusamba sustained the objection but guided the State to lead their witness.

He also ruled that the defence would have ample time to address the issues of signatures in cross examination.

The matter has been adjourned to July 29 this year for continued trial.