Former State House Press Aide Amos Chanda says he is ready to face the Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC) any day, explaining that he failed to appear for questioning into money laundering allegations yesterday because the Commission circulated the call out on social media before officially serving him on time.
And Lusaka district PF youth chairman Daniel Kalembe who led a horde of ruling party cadres into a solidarity march at DEC said Chanda deserved support because he created a lot of enemies while defending President Edgar Lungu in State House.
On Tuesday, DEC summoned Chanda to appear before the Commission’s Anti-Money Laundering unit in Lusaka on Wednesday morning for questioning..
But Chanda did not show up as he sent his lawyers to explain that he received the summons late.
“We are still waiting for Mr Amos Chanda to appear before the Drug Enforcement Commission, but we have not received any official communication as to why he has not yet appeared before the Commission. So we will be able to update you once he comes through to our offices on what will transpire. In case he has doesn’t come through to our offices then we will see how we are going to handle the matter from there as an institution. Initially, he was supposed to have appeared at 09:00 hours but then we received word that he would appear around 10:30 but up to now we are still waiting for his appearance. I cannot be able to disclose what exactly we are summoning him for, but as I indicated, we are going to issue a statement at an appropriate time depending on how the meeting goes,” said Katongo.
However, when contacted by News Diggers for an explanation, the Former Special Assistant to the President for Press and Public Relations said he could not appear before the Commission because he only saw the summon on social media on Tuesday, before it was officially served on him yesterday morning.
“My lawyers have written to DEC to express concern on the leakage of the call-out and to seek new date for my appearance. I returned abruptly from Mazabuka last evening after watching ZNBC news bulletin at 19:00 hrs. I could not trust the social media call-out which I saw around 16:00hrs on Tuesday, and I could not contact my lawyer because he was in court until late afternoon. So I received the actual copy of the call-out this morning at 07:30 am and was only able to give instructions to my lawyers at 08:45 am. Otherwise, I am ready to appear at DEC any date to be agreed with lawyers,” explained Chanda.
Earlier on Wednesday morning, a team of PF cadres led by Kalembe caused commotion at DEC’s Anti-Money Laundering unit where Chanda was scheduled to appear.
The cadres chanted various PF slogans accompanied by songs of solidarity for Chanda.
“We are here to give support to our brother, our comrade Amos Chanda who is coming to appear [here] for interviews. We don’t know the details but he’s our friend, he’s our comrade, he’s a friend of the party. So we have come to give him moral support as a party. For me personally, I know he has just to persevere. We know that these are politics, he was at one time very close to his Excellency the President. So he has to put in mind that he has got a lot of enemies because of the position which he held previously. What we can say as a party is that we appreciated the services which he offered to the government and to his Excellency the President, that’s why you have seen us we have come to give him moral support. So he just has to persevere,” said Kalembe.