Court hears how Luo gave Sinda headmen K30,000, urged them not to vote for Tongas

TWO village headmen in Sinda Constituency have revealed that losing PF presidential running mate Professor Nkandu Luo gave K30,000 to headmen when she visited the area.

And the headmen say Prof Luo urged them not to vote for Tongas because they were selfish.

Losing Sinda UPND candidate Levy Ngoma has petitioned the election of PF’s Masauso Tembo, who was declared winner by the Electoral Commission of Zambia.

Ngoma cited the involvement of foreign voters from Mozambique, Kapoche and Mkaika, chieftainess Kawaza’s involvement in the PF campaigns and the distribution of food by the PF as part of the grounds for the petition.

The matter is before Lusaka judge Susan Wenjelani who is sitting in Chipata.

Testifying in the matter, English Banda, who is also headman Magong’onde said he attended four meetings prior to the elections.

Banda said the first meeting was called by the first respondent at his residence where all the headmen were given bicycles to help in the campaigns.

He said the second meeting was called by Kawaza who was in the company of chief Madzimawe.

Banda also said the third and fourth meetings were also called by Kawaza where she directed them to vote for the PF and ordered them to disseminate the message in their areas.

He said the headmen had no option but disseminate the message as directed.

Banda said Prof Luo attended the fourth meeting.

“Prof Luo said she was sent by president Edgar Lungu to thank us for the good registration of voters and urged us to vote well. She said she had nothing much to say but that president Lungu gave her K30,000 for the headmen. We shared the money and I got K100,” he said.

In cross-examination by the first respondent’s lawyer John Phiri from JMP and associates, Banda said he had no video or pictures that were taken when Tembo was giving them bicycles.

He said he informed the petitioner about the bicycles but did not report to police or any investigative wing.

When asked whether he reported the hate speech that was allegedly uttered by the traditional leader to Paramount Gawa Kalonga or anywhere, Banda said he did not.

He said he did not report to Gawa because his authority ends at dealing with a chief.

Banda said he did not take a video or pictures at Kawaza’s palace because they were told to switch off the phones whenever they go for meetings at the palace.

When told by the lawyer that his evidence lacked material details, Banda said the bicycle that was brought before court was his evidence.

Guston Mbewe, who is headman Katepela, also showed the court a bicycle that Tembo gave him.
Mbewe also recalled that other meetings that he attended were called by Kawaza.

He said both Kawaza and Madzimawe told them not to vote for UPND but PF.

Mbewe said another meeting was chaired by a Catholic priest at the palace.

He also revealed that Prof Luo gave them K30,000 which was received by headman Agrippa and shared among them.

In this case the first petitioner is represented by Christopher Besa of MB Christopher practitioners.

Hearing continues.

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