THE Lusaka Magistrates’ Court has found 13 Leadership Movement party members with a case to answer in a matter where they are charged with being in possession of offensive weapons or materials.
Lusaka Chief Resident Magistrate Lameck Mwale has since placed them on their defence.
In this matter, 13 Leadership Movement (LM) party members, among them, party president Richard Silumbe and his secretary general Brown Sinyangwe are charged with one count of possession of offensive weapons or materials.
Other accused persons are; Yamikani Zulu, a security guard; Finod Mukubesa, also a security guard of Chawama; Gilbert Daka, a truck driver of Kamwala South and Isaac Chibuye of Kalingalinga township.
The rest are Lazarus Zimba, a businessman of John Laing; Edward Chicheleko, a security guard of Matero; Dismas Chanda, a minibus driver of Kamwala South; Amos Tembo, also a minibus driver of Kamwala South; Elias Banda, a driver of Kanyama; Joseph Chimwendo, an artist of Kanyama Site and Service and Prella Chinga, of Chinika area.
Particulars of the offence are that on October 14, 2019 in Lusaka, the 13 jointly and whilst acting together and without lawful excuse, had in their possession offensive weapons namely; 54 Machetes, six High Power Stun guns and 13 Short Battons.
They pleaded not guilty to the charge and various witnesses testified against them.
When the matter came up for ruling on case to answer, Monday, magistrate Mwale found the accused persons with a case to answer and accordingly placed them on their defence.
“I have carefully considered the evidence adduced and find that a prima facie case has been made out against all the accused persons in respect of the charge. I find each one of the accused persons with a case to answer and I accordingly put them on their defence,” he ruled.
After being placed on their defence, the accused persons’ lawyer informed the court that only one of the accused persons would give sworn evidence and would call witnesses in the matter.
The defence however, informed the court that they were not ready to proceed that day as they needed to prepare their defence.
The matter has since been adjourned to May 27 and 28, 2021 for commencement of defence.