By LUCY PHIRI
The Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC) yesterday failed to present the case in which it has accused former State House press aide Amos Chanda of destroying a court record because it did not have witnesses on account that the specific prosecutor assigned the matter was busy.
The commencement of trial in the matter could not take off and has since been set for January 30, 2023.
Chanda pleaded not guilty to one count of theft contrary to Section 272 of the Penal Code Chapter 87 of the Laws of Zambia and destroying evidence Contrary to Section 111 of the Penal Code Chapter 87 of the Laws of Zambia.
When the matter came up yesterday for commencement of trial before Principal Magistrate Ireen Wishimanga, the state informed the court that it was not ready to proceed with the matter because it was still preparing the witnesses.
“We are applying for an adjournment, we are not ready to proceed today because we don’t have witnesses,” State prosecutor Mr Lewis Kandela said.
But the defence lawyer, Mr Timmy Munalula reluctantly accepted the application to have the matter adjourned, stating that they were ready to proceed.
It is alleged in count one that on dates unknown, but between May 12, 2020 and October 1, 2022, Chanda together with others unknown did steal a case record number CRMP/001/2020, the property of the government of Zambia.
In count two, it is alleged that Chanda between May 12, 2020 and October 1, 2022, acting together with other persons unknown at Lusaka knowing that the case record CRMP/001/2020 is or may be required in evidence in a judicial proceeding, willfully did destroy it with intent, thereby to prevent it from being used in evidence.
Meanwhile, in another court case, former assistant development officer at Zambia Forestry and Forest Industries Corporation PLC (ZAFFICO) has told the Lusaka magistrate court that on September 7, 2022 she was given a financial statement invoices by Ray Mumba an accountant at ZAFFICO for 20 Mukula containers taking them to the buyer ACK Logistics.