LUNDAZI resident magistrate Edward Chisanga has recused himself from handling a matter where a Chipata-based PF cadre is charged with assaulting a Breeze FM reporter. The matter has since been re-allocated to magistrate Joseph Kapila.
Frank Mwale, 41 of Chipata’s Jere compound is charged with assault, occasioning actual bodily harm and theft.
Mwale is alleged to have assaulted Grace Lungu before stealing K400 from her in February.
The incident occurred when Lungu was covering Mkomba ward by-election in Lundazi Central Constituency.
During trial Lungu, 25 said she hired Lengani Kanyinji, 39, a taxi driver of Toyota Corolla registration number BAJ 6342 to take her to Mkomba ward on February 12, 2019 to cover the by-election.
She said on the way, their vehicle was blocked by a white Toyota Hilux, which they earlier overtook on their way to Mkomba ward.
Lungu said unknown people disembarked from the car and dragged Kanyinji out of the car and started beating him before Frank Mwale pulled her out of the car and slapped her and that he later grabbed her handbag which contained K400 cash.
Kanyinji was the second witness and his testimony was similar to that of Lungu.
Chief Inspector Cosmas Chileshe, 45, who is also senior liaison officer under Community Service Directorate based at Chipata police station, recounted how he helped the victim to identify the accused person at Mkomba polling station.
Detective Inspector Elijah Ndhlovu, 44 based at Chadiza Police Station, who is also the arresting officer, submitted to the court a medical report which indicated that Grace sustained bruises on her lips, swollen cheeks and was bleeding from the nose and mouth as a result of the beatings.
Inspector Ndhlovu adds that K400 cash was also stolen from the victim’s handbag by the accused person.
Magistrate Kabila has since adjourned the matter to August 12 for ruling before extending the accused bail.