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Court fines Muteteka K10,000 for abuse of office, acquits him on seven other counts

THE Lusaka Magistrates’ Court has convicted former Chisamba member of parliament Moses Muteteka on two counts of abuse of office and theft involving hammer mills.

The court jailed Muteteka 12 months with hard labour in the fifth count of theft but suspended it for two years on condition that he does not commit a similar offence.

In the second count of abuse of office, Lusaka magistrate Faides Hamaundu fined Muteteka K10,000 or in default serve nine months imprisonment.

Magistrate Hamaundu, however, acquitted Muteteka on several counts of abuse of authority of office and theft involving hammer mills and bicycles because the State failed to prove the case beyond reasonable doubt.

Delivering a lengthy judgment yesterday, magistrate Hamaundu said the State had proved the case against Muteteka in counts two and five in which he was alleged to have given a hammer mill to his sister and theft of the same.

Allegations in this matter are that Muteteka between January 1 and December 1, 2010, as member of parliament and deputy minister of local government, abused the authority of his office by giving a hammer mill he obtained from government to his relatives Eldah and Rosemary Mulongwe, his nephew Isaac Paso and grandson Daniel Lyatumba.

In the fifth count, Muteteka between January 1, 2011 and December 1, 2011 stole another hammer mill valued at K21,000.00 from Chibombo
District Council.

In counts six and seven, on the same dates, he allegedly gave a hammer
mill to Terry Milambo and another one to his nephew Fallace Chitito, both of Chibombo.

Muteteka in count eight was accused of procuring 26 bicycles, two solar
panels, a solar inverter, a solar regulator and a solar battery without following laid down tender procedures between January 1, 2011 and August 31, 2011.

In the ninth count, Muteteka allegedly directed Chisamba Constituency development committee to purchase six hammer mills from SARO Agro Industrial Limited, as the highest bidder.

Earlier, in mitigation, Muteteka through his lawyer, Maureen Mwanawasa, said her client was a first offender who had undergone multiple strokes in recent years and prayed that the court exercises maximum leniency.

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