The Lusaka High Court has found former Lusaka Province minister Obvious Mwaliteta and four other UPND members with no case to answer in a matter where they were charged with aggravated robbery.

High court judge Mwape Bowa set free Mwaliteta due to failure by the prosecution to prove the case against the accused.

Judge Bowa said there is no evidence linking the accused to the commissioning of the offence.

He said no weapons were found on them and neither was there any stolen material found on the accused to prove that they took part in the offence.

The court said the arresting officer’s evidence was so much discredited such that he failed to investigate the alibi of Mwaliteta’s co-accused being on the scene of crime when the attack was happening.

Judge Bowa said Mwaliteta’s presence at ECZ was for election business purposes being a known political figure, adding that there was nothing unusual about him being found at Election House as the country was awaiting the announcement of the presidential election results.

He said the arresting officer’s testimony was discredited in cross examination by defense counsels.

Mwaliteta and the other UPND supporters were being represented by Keith Mweemba, Gilbert Phiri, Willis Mubanga, Antony Kasolo, Mulambo Haimbe and Keith Mukata before his incarceration on allegations of murder.

The judge added that even though Mwaliteta and Evans Mukobela had communicated with Fred Hamamba whose vehicle was found at the scene of crime, there was no evidence to indicate that they were part of the robbers .

He says despite Mwaliteta having been with fugitive Fanwell Siandenge; who is former police commissioner, at ECZ,there was equally no direct evidence that he participated in the planning of the attack.

Judge Bowa added that while there was communication between Mwaliteta, Mukobela and Hamamba, the nature of the communication was still not known as it was not investigated by the arresting officer Arthur Shonga.

And Mwaliteta’s wife, who was elated by outcome of the ruling, said she was shocked with the turn of events.

Meanwhile, immediately after Mwaliteta was pronounced free, his daughter Melissa collapsed and was rushed outside the courtroom for medical help.

Obvious Mwaliteta’s daughters at the High Court – picture by Tenson Mkhala