A POLICE officer has testified that potential witnesses in the assault case involving Kasama Central member of Parliament (MP) Geoffrey Mwamba were not willing to be interviewed for fear of losing their jobs.
Assistant superintendent Flywell Mbale, 53, based at Matero Police Station, told Lusaka magistrate Prince Mwiinga yesterday that people he inquired from about Mwamba’s alleged assault of his employee, Collins Mudai, were not cooperative for fear of victimisation.
Mr Mbale was testifying in a case in which Mwamba, who is also former Minister of Defence, is charged with assault occasioning actual bodily harm contrary to the laws of Zambia.
Mwamba is alleged to have assaulted Mr Mudai, a logistics officer at his Arizona Marketing and Distribution Company, on May 14 this year.
“I conducted a very good investigation although the environment at Arizona was hostile for me when I went to question potential witnesses.
“By hostile I mean people I found were not willing to cooperate and come forward to help with investigations for fear of victimisation and losing their jobs,” he said.
Mr Mbale said during cross-examination by Mwamba’s defence lawyers that he interviewed Mr Mudai and two other witnesses but the two independent witnesses were not willing to give him their details.
He said according to Mr Mudai’s statement recorded at Matero Police Station on May 16 this year, Mwamba pushed him after a dispute on shortage of fuel for three trucks.
Mr Mbale said he thoroughly investigated the matter for him to arrest and charge Mwamba with assault occasioning actual bodily harm although Mr Mudai did not have physical injury on him.
During re-examination by State prosecutors, he said Mwamba punched and pushed Mudai.
Mwamba is being represented by lawyers Sakwiba Sikota, Martha Mushipe, Makebi Zulu and Mutakela Lisimba.
Zambia Daily Mail