A Breeze FM reporter has narrated to the Lundazi Magistrates’ Court how a PF member dragged her out of a taxi, slapped her and grabbed her handbag which was containing K400 cash as she was on her way to cover a by-election.

This is in a matter where Frank Mwale, 41, a businessman of Jere Compound in Chipata district is in the first count charged with assault occasioning actual bodily harm on Grace Lungu, a journalist from Chipata’s Breeze FM.

In the second count, Mwale is charged with theft of money amounting to K400 cash property of Grace Lungu contrary to the laws of Zambia.

Appearing before Magistrate Joseph Kapila, who restarted the case after resident magistrate Edward Chisanga recused himself on account that the complainant was a close friend’s daughter, Mwale denied both counts.

Speaking during trial, the first and second witnesses Grace Lungu 25 and Lengani Kanyinji 39 a taxi driver of Toyota Corolla registration number BAJ 6342 both told the court that on February 12th, 2019, their vehicle was blocked by a Toyota Hilux white in colour which they earlier overtook on their way to Mkomba where the complainant was assigned to cover a by-election.

They said unknown people disembarked from the car and dragged Kanyinji out of their car and started beating him before Frank Mwale pulled Lungu out of the car and slapped her after he grabbed her handbag which contained K400 cash.

And the third witness, Police Chief Inspector Cosmass Chileshe, 45, who is also Senior Liaison Officer under Community Service Directorate based at Chipata police station, told the court how he helped the victim to identify the accused person at Mkomba polling station.

The fourth witness and arresting officer Detective Inspector Elijah Ndhlovu, 44, based at Chadiza police station submitted to the court a medical report which indicated that Grace sustained bruises on the lower lips with swollen cheeks and was bleeding from the nose and mouth as a result of beatings.

Inspector Ndhlovu added that K400 cash was also stolen from the victim’s hand bag by the accused person.

Meanwhile, Magistrate Kabila adjourned the matter to August 12, 2019 for ruling and extended Mwale’s bail.