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Lusaka court discharges ex-Health Minister, Chilufya, over Honeybee drug saga, as govt withdraws suit


Lusaka Chief Resident Magistrate Davies Chibwili has discharged former Health Minister Chitalu Chilufya, his former Permanent Secretary Caroline Mulalelo Kakulubelwa and honeybee directors.

This is in a case they are accused of conspiracy to defraud the Zambian government in connection to procurement of Honeybee drugs.

In this matter, Chilufya, Kakulubelwa and Honeybee directors pleaded not guilty to corruption involving US$17,958,150.00.

When the matter came up yesterday for commencement of trial, the State made an application to discontinue the matter pursuant to section 88 of the Criminal Procedure Code.

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The state informed the court that the matter was scheduled for commencement of trial but they have received instructions to withdraw the matter under section 88 of the CPC.

“We apply to have the matter withdrawn” the state submitted.

Chilufya,50, is jointly charged with Kakulubelwa,47, a property surveyor, Likando Kalaluka,45, a legal practitioner, Wilson Lungu,38, procurement officer, Emmanuel Mubanga,38, Pharmacist, Abdurrauf Motala,40, Pharmacist, Zakir Motala,43, businessman and Imran Lunat, 41, also a businessman.

All the eight accused persons where charged with one count of conspiracy to defraud contrary to section 315 subsection 87 of the laws of Zambia the case the denied.

Magistrate Chibwili however asked the state to give reasons to why the matter was discontinuing for the court to be satisfied.

The state in response said in such scenarios when consent or instructions are given to withdraw, the state had no objections.

“They are two scenarios when its done with the consent of the court or when they are instructions like in this case . Withdrawal is not an acquittal,” state submits.

Magistrate Chibwili ruled that since there was no objection, the application was granted and the accused where free to go.

It is alleged that on dates unknown but between January 1, 2019 and December 31, 2020, Chilufya, jointly and whilst acting together with Kakulubelwa, Kalaluka, Lungu, Mubanga, Motala, Zakir Motala, Lunat and other persons unknown did conspire to defraud the Government of the Republic of Zambia.

This is in the manner in which Honeybee Pharmacy, participated in the tender to supply and deliver 50,000 Health Centre Kits and was consequently awarded a contract for supply and delivery of 22, 500 Health Centre Kits valued at US$17,958,150.00.

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