Police yesterday arrested Luckson Kazabu and detained him at Kamwala Prison before the UPND team could raise K20,000 to bail him out, late in the evening.
This happened at the Lusaka Magistrate’s Court where Kazabu and former Chongwe UPND member of parliament Sylvia Masebo had gone to witness the continued trial of Lusaka lawyer Martha Mushipe.
A former UPND member, who recently defected back to his original party, PF, Emmanuel Chilekwa was also seen at the Magistrates Court moments before the Mushipe case was called.
While waiting in the corridors for the Mushipe case to take off, Masebo, Kazabu and some other UPND officials were discussing the developments from Parliament earlier in the day where Chongwe MP Keith Mukata had defied the party’s directive to shun President Edgar Lungu’s State of the Nation address.
However, after noticing Chilekwa, the UPND officials got agitated as they suspected that he could have been brought by the State to testify against Mushipe.
In January this year, Ephraim Shakafuswa had testified that Mushipe tasked him and other people, including Chilekwa, to disturb peace in the country through violence.
Masebo was then seen having a conversation with Chilekwa outside the courtroom, but it was Kazabu’s comment which attracted magistrate Felix Kaoma’s attention.
Immediately after Masebo finished talking to Chilekwa, Kazabu was heard saying, “yes my sister the party must sort him out. This is not good its embarrassing to the Party,” in apparent reference to Mukata’s conduct, a matter which was earlier being discussed.
At this point, Chilekwa who was earshot interjected and asked, “why should I be sorted out”.
Before Masebo could explain to Chilekwa what Kazabu was refereeing to, the suspected State witness then rushed to inform Mushipe’s prosecution team that he was being threatened.
Chilekwa claimed that Kazabu threatened his life if went ahead to testify against Mushipe.
Magistrate Kaoma, upon hearing the issue raised, reserved his ruling but placed Kazabu under arrest.
“I will make a ruling on Monday, in the meantime you are under arrest unless you get 2 sureties with K20,000 cash bond,” ruled magistrate Kaoma.
Police then placed Kazabu in custody and transferred him to Kamwala remand prison until late evening when the UPND team managed to raise K20,000 to meet his bail conditions.
The Mushipe case, which was earlier scheduled, failed to take off.
Kazabu will appear in court on Monday at 09:00 hours.