FOUR UPND cadres have pleaded not guilty in a matter where they are accused of beating up a PF cadre at the court premises.

The assault is alleged to have occurred after a judgement in a mayoral petition.

In this matter, Robby Chinyemba, 46, Max Chinyemba, 41, Lackson Tembo, 42 and Vincent Zulu, 27, all businessmen, are charged with one count of assault contrary to the laws of Zambia.

Particulars of the offence allege that the accused persons whilst acting together assaulted Nicodemus Chileshe on September 21, 2021, thereby causing him actual bodily harm.

In the previous sitting, the accused failed to take plea as one of the accused persons, Vincent Zulu, was not before court, leading Magistrate Emma Masoja to issue a bench warrant against him.

And when the matter came up for the return of bench warrant and possible plea, Friday, all the accused persons pleaded not guilty to the charge.

When asked why he was not before court during the previous sittings, Zulu told the court that he was unwell and that his phone was off.

When asked further why he did not send his surety to inform the court, he insisted that he was not well and his phone was off, which prompted him to send his wife to inform the surety at Soweto market.

Magistrate Masoja was however not convinced with Zulu’s explaination and revoked his police bond.

He, however, granted him bail in the sum of K2,000 in his recognizance, with two working sureties in the like sum.

Meanwhile, Bwalya Chishala, a councillor who was Zulu’s surety, informed the court that he was withdrawing his role as a surety.

The matter has since been adjourned to October 29 for trial.