MINISTRY of Foreign Affairs permanent secretary Ronald Simwinga and Lusaka businessman Lombe Okpara have entered into an agreement that the PS be removed from the case where he is accused of committing adultery with the latter’s wife on condition that he pays K100,000 as full and final settlement of the matter.

In this matter, Okpara has dragged his wife, Musamba Mulenga, an investments officer at the Development Bank of Zambia, to the Lusaka High Court for dissolution of their eight-year marriage for allegedly engaging in adultery with Simwinga and former Central Province deputy Permanent Secretary Patrick Mwanawasa.

He has also cited Simwinga and Mwanawasa as first and second co-respondents in the case.

But according to a consent order filed in the Lusaka High Court, August 4, 2020, Simwinga and Okpara have agreed that the court orders that the first co-respondent pays K100,000 as full and final settlement of the matter and that he be struck out of the proceedings.

The said consent order is, however, pending authorisation of Lusaka High Court judge Nicola Sharpe-Phiri.

“By mutual consent of the petitioner (Okpara) and first co-respondent (Simwinga) hereto, it is hereby agreed as follows; (i) That the first co-respondent shall pay the sum of K100,000 as full and final settlement of this matter in regard to the claims against the first co-respondent. (ii) That the first co-respondent be and is hereby struck out from these proceedings as first co-respondent and that the petitioner shall not commence any other action based on the same or similar previous facts against the first co-respondent upon execution of this consent Order,

(iii) That the petitioner shall not avail evidence linking the first co-respondent directly in regard to the settled matter. (iv)That each party shall bear his own costs in regard to this consent Order,” read the document which has been signed by both Simwinga and Okpara.

According to his petition for the dissolution of marriage, Okpara claimed that his wife admitted committing adultery with Simwinga and Mwanawasa.

He further claimed that on November 3, 2018, his wife and Mwanawasa spent time together at a short-term rented duplex apartment situated on Lukanga road in Roma township.

Okpara stated that his wife and Mwanawasa spent about five hours in the said apartment from 17:00 hours to 21:45 hours after which Mwanawasa allegedly complained of pain on his manhood following the alleged sexual encounter.

He also cited unreasonable behavior, among other reasons, claiming that his wife arranged and hosted a party for Simwinga at her sister’s house and convinced him that it was a kind gesture to appreciate Simwinga for the favours that he did for her family.

Okpara claimed his wife asked him to be present at the party and entertain the guests, and little did he know that the primary guest was actually his wife’s sexual partner.

But in his answer, Simwinga denied committing adultery with Mulenga, and that he shall put Okpara to strict proof over his allegations against him.

He also denied ever being invited for a party, adding that he would state at trial that he had only attended a luncheon at the home of Mulenga’s elder sister, with whom they are good friends.

Simwinga argued that Okpara had failed to show how he and Mulenga allegedly committed adultery in his petition.

In his reply to the petition, Patrick also denied Okpara’s allegations, saying Mulenga was a mere friend whom he had the privilege of discussing business with by virtue of their employment.

Patrick added that at no time did he rent an apartment as alleged by Okpara in the petition and further stated that Okpara’s allegations were malicious and not tantamount to adultery which was the main issue in the petition.

He urged the court not to award Okpara damages and costs as it would amount to unfair and unjust enrichment.

Patrick stated that Mulenga was an adult and no one would take peculiar advantage of her as a married woman.