A POLICE officer has testified that he apprehended two of the UPND cadres accused of conducting themselves in a manner likely to cause breach of peace on the day their leader, Hakainde Hichilema, was being questioned at Police Headquarters.

This is a matter in which 11 UPND supporters are charged with idle and disorderly persons, but pleaded not guilty.

The accused persons are: Auckland Katamanga, 38, a general worker of Kafue; Habinga Mainza, 30, a security guard of John Laing; Marco Siyabukulu, 27, a chef of Ng’ombe Township; Joseph Mbuzi, 38, unemployed of Kalingalinga; Edwin Louis, 32, a businessman of Kaunda Square Stage One and Kamanga Siambilu, 41, a bricklayer of Kalingalinga.

Others are Peter Musoka, 34, a general worker of Kanyama; Briston Simuyendo, 21, a general worker of Mtendere; Charles Musonda, 45, a bus driver of Garden side area; Ganizani Moonga, 39, a salesman of Chalala and Chrispine Chipango, 46, a bricklayer of Bauleni.

It is alleged that on December 23, 2020, in Lusaka, the accused persons jointly and whilst acting together whilst at a public place, namely along Independence Avenue, conducted themselves in a manner likely to cause breach of peace.

When the matter came up for continued trial before Lusaka Magistrate Albert Mwaba, Monday, Edward Chibuye, a police officer, testified that on December 23, 2020, he reported on duty at Central Police Station around 07:30 hours.

He said he was later deployed with other officers to patrol along Independence Avenue, areas around Northmead and part of Cairo Road.

Chibuye said this was because it was alleged that some UPND cadres wanted to march to Police Headquarters where the UPND president was called for questioning.

He said around 10 to 11:00 hours it was transmitted on their police radio that there were a group of UPND cadres at the High Court roundabout.

Chibuye said at that moment, they were in town and they rushed to High Court roundabout.

“When we reached there, we found a group of people who were chanting slogans and blocked part of the road, which made motorists not to drive past them. We spotted those who were in the forefront of causing confusion. We went for them, and that’s how I apprehended two. We later took them to Central Police and I identified the two as Charles Musonda and Ganizani Moonga. They were charged with conduct likely to cause breach of peace,” he narrated.

But in cross-examination by defence lawyer Mulambo Haimbe, the officer admitted that he had not described any features of the accused persons, which would have identified them as UPND cadres.

He also agreed that he didn’t mention to the Court whether he took any steps to rule out the probability that the two accused persons he apprehended were members of the public.

Chibuye said he was aware that the area he apprehended the two from was a public area open to everyone.
Trial continues on April 19, this year.