KABUSHI PF member of parliament Bowman Lusambo has denied bribing the electorate and church choir groups in order to garner votes, bragging that he is so famous that even one-year-olds know him in his constituency.
And Lusambo has expressed ignorance that PF uses a clenched fist as its symbol.
This is a matter in which Kabushi UPND losing candidate Bernard Kanengo has petitioned Lusambo’s election in the Ndola High Court, citing violence, corruption and electoral malpractices.
But opening his defence before High Court Judge Edward Musona, Lusambo told the court that as a public figure, he was well known in his constituency that even children aged one him.
He said allegations that he was bribing the electorate during campaigns were false.
When asked by his lawyer Jonas Zimba if it was true that on August 8, 2021, he invited two choir groups and gave them K20,000 to share, Lusambo responded in the negative.
The Kabushi lawmaker said it was not true that he invited choir groups from Holy Trinity Catholic Church in Masala and Holy Cross Catholic Church in Kabushi to his residence and thereafter gave them K20,000 each.
Lusambo also denied having bribed choir members from the United Church of Zambia.
He told the court that on the material day, he was in Kitwe attending a political rally at Changanamai ground in Kwacha Constituency.
“As an MP, my job is to interact with the people and being a Christian, My Lord, from 2015 to date, I have visited more than 40 churches and I have interacted with congregants, including choir members,” he said.
Lusambo further denied claims that his agent, a Mrs Nyirenda, rounded up UPND members and treated them to a banquet.
He said it was not true that his supporters, who Kanengo referred to as the “Nato Forces”, attacked the petitioner and his supporters.
Lusambo told the court that on that particular day, he was with former president Edgar Lungu who was in the province.
“It is not true because on that particular day, president of Zambia, his excellency president Edgar Lungu visited Ndola and I was with the president the whole day,” he said.
In cross examination by Kanengo’s lawyer Chimuka Maggubwi, Lusambo confirmed the presence of choir members at his residence in Ndola.
When asked if the choir groups were invited, Lusambo said they were invited by his campaign manager, who later informed him of their presence at his residence.
Lusambo also expressed ignorance that the PF used the clenched fist as its symbol.
“I do not know that the clenched fist is associated with PF. I am not aware that there were a lot of billboards for the PF. I am not aware that the billboards had posters with candidates with clenched fists. I am not aware of the adage ‘pamaka’,” Lusambo said during cross examination.
“I have been a PF member for 20 years of unbroken record. I don’t lie, but I’m not aware of the PF symbol.”
Kanengo had previously narrated to the Ndola High Court how a group of PF security known as “Nato Forces” poured porridge on his supporters during campaigns.
Kanengo testified that he went to hide in a mosque after Lusambo allegedly unleashed the said thugs on him.