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PF cadre contempt case fails to take off

THE case in which PF cadre Chanoda Ngwira is in court to show cause why he should not be cited for contempt for writing letters to Supreme Court judges Mumba Malila and Albert Wood over the witness statements they gave in Mutembo Nchito’s petition failed to take off yesterday.

Ngwira on October 26 wrote letters to judge Malila and Wood and threatened them with criminal action for giving witness statements in Mutembo’s petition in which he is challenging his dismissal as Director of Public Prosecutions.

Ngwira gave justice Malila and Wood five days in which to voluntarily step down for accepting to be witnesses on behalf  Mutembo in the Constitutional Court.

Mutembo moved a motion for an order to commit Ngwira pursuant to orders 52/1 (1) and 52/4 (1) of the rules of the Supreme Court.

In his affidavit filed in court, Mutembo contended that Ngwira’s conduct of writing two justices Mumba Malila and Albert Wood, demanding that they step down and if not, threatening them with criminal action for giving witness statements in a matter in which the court ordered him to furnish witness statements and copying the letter to the judges presiding over the cause was calculated to prejudice the due course of justice in the matter.

He stated that Ngwira had gone so far as to publish acknowledgment of receipt from the chambers of judges of the court and others.

Mutembo added that Ngwira’s threats were replayed in the ZNBC news at 19:00 hours on October 29 including an interview in which he repeated  the threats.

“If the blatant disrespect for the processes of this court by the alleged contemnor goes without sanction, it threatens to diminish the dignity of this court,” said Mutembo.

But the matter failed to take off yesterday due to the absence of two Concourt judges and was adjourned to November 20.

 

Judge Enock Mulembe sitting with justice Professor Margaret Munalula and Martin Musaluke informed the parties that two judges who were supposed to be on the panel were not around and that the bench was of the view the it be adjourned to November 20.

Mutembo and Chisuwo Hamwela placed themselves on the record as counsel for the complaint while Ngwira is being represented by Ferdinand Jere and Kennedy Mambwe.

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