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HomeTrendingSOLDIERS IN MEALIE MEAL SMUGGLING EXPOSÉ  

SOLDIERS IN MEALIE MEAL SMUGGLING EXPOSÉ  

By ROGERS KALERO

POLICE in Ndola have impounded two containerised trucks laden with mealie meal in ZAFFICO Chichele plantation which were being escorted for smuggling into the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) by four armed military personnel.

The Police also apprehended five men for assembling for the purpose of smuggling and are detained at Chifubul Police Station, while efforts were being made to have the four soldiers surrendered to police.

Copperbelt Police Commissioner Peacewell Mweemba said the four who were apprehended were identified as Lengwe Bwalya aged 30 of unmarked house number in Mitengo area of Ndola who is the driver for the Hino light truck Reg No. BAR 9259 branded Kyose express, Abel Mulopa aged 45 of House number 1878 Pamodzi Overspill Ndola, the driver for Volvo Truck Reg No. BCD 1522.

Others who were apprehended were Samuel Kalaba aged 36 of house number 11011 Mitengo area Ndola, a  Businessman, Evans Saili aged 34 of unmarked house number in Mitengo area Ndola, and Denise Musonda aged 42 of house number 5016/3911 Chifubu extension Ndola, a businessman.

Mr Mweemba said the incident on April 25, 2023 around 23.00 hours in ZAFFICO Chichele plantation in Kawama area of Ndola in which Captain Banda of Zambia Army Kalewa barracks in Ndola, reported that together with his soldiers, apprehended the five suspects and impounded the two containerised trucks laden with mealie meal.

He said facts of the matter were that Captain Banda on April 25, 2023 around 2300 hours, whilst on duty doing motorised patrols in ZAFFICO Kawama Plantation of Ndola, came across the two containerised trucks laden with mealie meal which were being escorted by four soldiers who were armed with guns, whose details are not yet known.

 “The same soldiers were beaten by the patrol team led by Captain Banda. However, the four soldiers who escorted the trucks in question were not brought to Chifubu police station apart from the stated drivers and three men found on the vehicles

“Preliminary interviews conducted on the five suspects confirmed that they were under escort by the four soldiers, and their final destination was DRC border. One of the suspects, Samuel Kalaba, under warn and caution, confirmed to police that the soldiers escorting them were paid K10,000 for the escort,’’ Mr Mweemba said.

Mr Mweemba said it was estimated that there are about 200 – 250×25kgs bags of mealie meal on the light truck and the Volvo truck has about 750 – 800×25kgs bags of mealie meal. 

“However, it should be noted that the correct number of bags will be known as soon as the counting is done in the presence of the suspects. The suspects will appear in court soon while the process of disposing of the mealie meal by the court is underway. 

“In the meantime, the office of the officer commanding Ndola is making efforts to have the four soldiers surrendered to police so that they are handled together with the other five suspects,’’ he said.

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