Court jails ex-President Lungu’s media aide, Chanda, to 7 months


Former Presidential Press Aide, Amos Chanda, and two others have been sentenced to seven months simple imprisonment for obstructing Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) officers from conducting a search at his residence.

Chanda and his wife Marble Nakaundi were fined K135 each for insulting officers or in default, 30 days simple imprisonment.

Read more: Lungu’s former media aide, Chanda, to answer to charges of theft, destroying evidence

Magistrate Dominic Makalicha said the sentences would run concurrently effective March 13, 2024.

It was alleged that Chanda who served as Press Aide to former President Edgar Lungu, insulted the officers by referring to them as ‘idiots’ and ‘criminals’ when they went to search his house on October 27, 2021.

It was also alleged that himself, his wife and sister-in-law, Ruth Nakaundi, on the same day, allegedly obstructed and delayed officers from the ACC namely senior investigations officer Friday Tembo and others in lawful exercise of their duty to search house number 67 Elm road, Woodlands, Lusaka by dishonestly stating that the keys to the bedrooms were with another person who had travelled out of town when in fact not.

The trio in defence asked the Court to acquit them on account that there was no sufficient evidence adduced by the prosecution to prove their guilt.

Rendering judgement on Wednesday after over five adjournments, Magistrate Makalicha said there was enough evidence that the now convicts insulted and obstructed the officers.

He doubted the argument by the accused that the officers fabricated the evidence.

He said the accused referred to the officers as grade 12 failures and that he could pay them better.

He said other insults in Bemba language included: “Ch*****kala F*****yo”

The trial Magistrate stated that there was no doubt that the trio committed the offences and convicted them accordingly.

In mitigation, the accused through their lawyer Boyd Munalula pleaded for a non-custodial sentence and for the Court to consider a fine with a manageable amount.

The trial Magistrate however, stated that it was unfortunate for a man like Chanda who had occupied a high position in the civil service to unleash such insults.

He said in fact it was the first time he heard such insults and yet officers who were probably even married received such.

Magistrate Makalicha said the accused needed to be punished to set an example for others also in the habit of insulting and obstructing officers when they are conducting their duties.

“However I have to say that what the accused did was very wrong. What the ACC officers did was on behalf of the institution under the order of the court through a search.

“If you check properly on the wording of the search warrant, it talks about whatever they were doing, was in the name of the President. Therefore, insulting an officer doing their work under a court order is very wrong,” said Magistrate Makalicha.

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