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Court throws out Pearl of Health’s application to have expired drug case against it dismissed

LUSAKA resident magistrate Felix Kaoma has thrown out an application by Pearl of Health Hospital to have the matter in which it allegedly supplied an expired drug dismissed. And hospital representative Professor Ataur Rahman has pleaded not guilty to the charge.
The allegation in this case is that Pearl of Health Hospital on July 19, 2017, in Lusaka, supplied n expired bottle of Neopeptine liquid to Patricia Banda Mwiinga without lawful authority.

A representative from the hospital refused to take plea last week, arguing that the indictment before court did not disclose a reasonable offence and that Zambia Medicines Regulations Authority was not competent to lodge a complaint on behalf of a victim. But ZAMRA insisted that it had the power to commence criminal proceedings against the hospital.

In his ruling, magistrate Kaoma said the argument by Pearl of Health was misconceived.  “I find no merit in the preliminary issue raised by the defence and I accordingly dismiss the application,” he said.
After the ruling, defence counsel Raymond Musumali said the accused person wanted to appeal the ruling but magistrate Kaoma said interlocutory applications could not be appealed in criminal matters.

He, however, still argued and told the court to read Sub-Section 7 of Section 90 of the Criminal Procedure Code. Magistrate Kaoma considered the section and established that it talked about something else. He said the application to appeal against his ruling was misconstrued, warning Musumali against misleading the court. Professor Rahman then took plea and denied the charge.
The case comes up on October 23 for trial.

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