THE Lusaka Magistrates’ Court yesterday failed to render judgment in a matter where former community development and social services minister Emerine Kabanshi is facing charges of willful failure to comply with the law and applicable procedure or guidelines relating to procurement, as she was reported sick.
Kabanshi is alleged to have extended the scope of coverage of the Social Cash Transfer programme by including three provinces and two districts on the list of beneficiaries and by re-engaging Zampost as the payment service provider for the funds after its contract was terminated.
When the matter came up for judgment before chief resident magistrate Lameck Mwale, state advocate Daniel Ngwira of the Anti-Corruption Commission told the court the state was ready to proceed but the accused was not before court.
Kabanshi’s lawyer Jonas Zimba informed the court that his client was unwell.
“We would have been ready to proceed [but] I was informed this morning that the accused is unwell and has proceeded to the hospital. I would have the surety addressing the court but the nature of the bond given to the accused was in her own recognisance,” said Zimba. “We apologise for the inconvenience caused to the court and the prosecution. We request that the matter be adjourned to a nearest date.”
Magistrate Mwale adjourned the matter to May 28.