NEWLY elected Chawama PF member of parliament Tasila Lungu has denied being behind any violence or irregularities in the Chawama parliamentary elections in which she emerged winner.
This is a matter in which losing UPND candidate, Portipher Tembo, has petitioned Tasila’s election citing various irregularities and malpractices.
Tembo has also cited the Electoral Commission of Zambia as the second respondent in the matter.
But according to the answer filed in the Lusaka High Court, Tasila denied that the elections in the area were characterized by undue influence that resulted from threats and violence to life and property as alleged by Tembo.
She also denied that there were rampant physical attacks and sexual assault caused by her campaign team as portrayed in the petition, and stated that she would at trial aver that the campaign period was relatively calm and peaceful and that she was not aware of the happenings that Tembo seeks to assert.
Tasila further denied allegations that she distributed mealie meal and cooking oil in almost the whole of Chawama as alleged in the petition.
She however stated that the purported acts of violence were cast in generalities and cannot be specifically responded to as the petitioner merely referred to ‘supporters’ whose identities or existence cannot be ascertained.
Tasila denied allegations that Innocent Kalimanshi and Nathan Phiri were her agents and distanced herself from any acts of violence perpetrated by the group.
“That the said Innocent Kalimanshi and Nathan Phiri are not and have never been the first respondent’s agents. That all purported incidents, if at all true, relating to Kalimanshi and his group cannot in any way be attributed to the first respondent or her campaign team and neither can she take responsibility for the alleged deeds or misdeeds,” she stated.
Tasila further stated that she was unaware of the purported high levels of violence in Chawama Constituency as alleged and would take judicial notice that the said Kalimanshi and Phiri were arrested for drug-related offences and not violence as the information is in public domain.
She submitted that she did not invite, encourage or approve that any of her supporters act violently.
Tasila however prayed that the petition be dismissed with costs, arguing that it was baseless and lacked merit as she was the duly elected member of parliament for Chawama.