THE Chipata High Court on Friday fined an unlicenced driver of Lundazi K4,000 for causing the death of four people by dangerous driving. Before Lusaka judge Mwape Bowa, who is sitting in Chipata, was Isaac Phiri, who pleaded guilty to all the four counts of causing death by dangerous driving.
Facts of the matter were that Phiri caused the death of the four people while driving along the Chipata/Lundazi road on November 13, 2016. The accident occurred when Phiri was trying to avoid a cyclist. In mitigation, Legal Aid Board counsel Sally Bwalya said Phiri was remorseful for causing the death of four people which included his aunt.
Bwalya said the convict, who was a mechanic, would be haunted for causing the death of four people. She said Phiri did not contribute anything towards the funeral of the accident victims as everything was taken care of by the church. Bwalya said Phiri was the first offender who readily pleaded guilty to the charge without wasting the court’s time and regrets his actions.
But judge Bowa said he considered what was said in mitigation by the defence counsel and that the convict was entitled to leniency. He said the death of the four people was an aggravating circumstance in itself. Judge Bowa wondered why Phiri who was unlicensed was carrying five people using a vehicle, which was not road worthy.
He said looking at the circumstances that led to the accident, Phiri was not wholesomely to blame. Judge Bowa fined Phiri K1000 in each of the four counts and the money was to be paid forthwith in default six months simple imprisonment.
“I also disqualify you from obtaining driving license in Zambia for a period of 24 months. Consider yourself lucky,” he said.
Judge Bowa also fined Kiddy Mozah of Nyimba K3,500, Nevers Mbewe K3,000, among others, for a similar offence.
All the payments were to be paid on Friday.