UNIP administrative secretary Welfare Mfune has argued that the party secretary general Alfred Banda did not commit any perjury when he told the Lusaka High Court that no party asset has been sold by the leadership.
He also submitted that no party assets have been sold, adding that all assets, which were being referred to by the 11 UNIP members who have sued the party leaders, do not belong to UNIP but a company called Zambia National Holdings Limited.
In this matter, 11 UNIP members have sued the party president Tilyenji Kaunda and other party leaders for allegedly holding their positions as members of central committee illegally, claiming that their mandate expired in 2005.
Fackson Njovu and 10 others are seeking, among others, an injunction to restrain Kaunda and the others from performing functions of MCCs, an order for an account of all party assets sold from 2000 to-date and an order that the outgoing MCCs and the recognized interim MCCs follow the Registrar of Societies directive to jointly-organize and hold a congress by forming one working group.
Njovu sued Kaunda, UNIP vice president Njekwa Anamela, secretary general of the party Alfred Banda and administrative secretary Welfare Mfune, on behalf of 10 other party members.
Last year, Lusaka High Court Judge Alfred Muma restrained Kaunda and his group from performing any functions of the party until the determination of the matter.
This followed the injunction filed by 11 UNIP members.
But in an affidavit in support of notice of intention to raise preliminary issues, Banda, the party secretary general, claimed that the lead plaintiff in the matter, Fackson Njovu, was no longer a member of UNIP as he defected to the MMD after he sold a party building in Chaisa and he never applied for re-admission to the party.
He further claimed that the other plaintiffs were also not genuine members of UNIP as they had been moving from one party to another especially, the ruling parties of the time, while others were not in good standing with the party due to various disciplinary cases at different levels of the party structure.
However, in a further affidavit in opposition to notice of intention to raise preliminary issues and in support of ex-parte summons for an order of interim injunction and affidavit verifying facts, the plaintiffs urged the Court not to entertain the preliminary issue raised by Banda alleging that the 11 were no longer members of the party.
They added that the same was aimed at frustrating a genuine claim by the members of UNIP before Court.
Njobvu further argued that the defendants committed perjury in the affidavit in reply when Banda stated that no party asset had been sold.
He added that the defendants had sold the party assets without the approved two-thirds of congress and contrary to the UNIP constitution.
Njovu stated that on December 6, last year, the defendants assigned UNIP property No. Kabw632 to Iqbal Akubat and the said property was sold at K700,000.
He further alleged that on March 30, 2017, the defendants, through Zambia National Holdings Limited, a company owned by UNIP, sold property No. LUS/4870 to Kamrul Ahsa.
Njovu also alleged, among others, that the defendants on behalf of UNIP received motor vehicles donations for campaigns and some were placed under the custody of the company incorporated as Kwenda Zambia Car Hire Limited, but all have been sold without an account.
He stated that Anamela and Mfune were directors and holders of shares on behalf of UNIP in Zambia National Holdings Limited.
But in a further affidavit in reply, Mfune, who is UNIP administrative secretary, disputed the claims by the plaintiff, stating that the defendants have not sold any assets of UNIP without the approved two-thirds of congress.
He further stated that the property sold by the Zambia National Holdings Limited where the defendants were only shareholders, did not belong to UNIP, but to the same company, which was the legal owner.
Mfune denied that he and Anamela had shares in Zambia National Holdings Limited on behalf of UNIP, but that they were shareholders in their own right and were not the only shareholders in the said company.
He also disputed the other claims by Njovu, stating that the plaintiff had failed to indicate what type and how many vehicles were received on behalf of UNIP and that there was no document to show that the shares in Kwenda Zambia Car Hire Limited were held on behalf of UNIP.
“There is nothing for the defendants to account for and no perjury was committed by Alfred Banda as no party assets have been sold as all the assets the Plaintiff is referring do not belong to UNIP, but to a company called Zambia National Holdings Limited,” stated Mfune.