PeP leader, Tembo, fails in bid to have Education Minister, Syakalima, prosecuted for hate speech


Education Minister, Douglas Syakalima, has been cleared of hate speech charges after the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) refused to allow Patriots for Economic Progress (PeP) president, Sean Tembo, to pursue a private prosecution.

Tembo had accused Syakalima of publicly stating that people from Luapula suffer from “poverty of the mind,” which he claimed violated Section 65 of the Cyber Security and Cyber Crimes Act of 2021.

Read more: PeP leader, Tembo, seeks arrest of Education Minister, Syakalima, for contempt of court

When the matter came up for ruling on Tembo’s application to have Syakalima issued with a warrant of arrest for absconding the last session, Lusaka Magistrate Mwandu Sakala was informed by the defense of a letter from the DPP, Gilbert Phiri, resulting in the accused being discharged.

The DPP declined to grant Tembo permission to proceed with the case, leading to Syakalima’s discharge.

Tembo objected to the decision, arguing that the DPP’s letter lacked authority and demanding a valid and original letter stating the DPP’s position.

Despite Tembo’s objections, Magistrate Mwandu Sakala ruled that the letter from the DPP was sufficient to establish that the court lacked jurisdiction to hear the case and accordingly discharged Syakalima.

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