—Commencement of trial in the case in which nine University of Zambia (UNZA) students have been charged with idling and disorderly conduct failed to take off in a Lusaka Magistrates’ Court due to non-availability of state witnesses before
This is a matter in which the nine students have been charged with one count of Idle and Disorderly Conduct contrary to Section 178 (f) of the Penal Code Chapter 87 of the Laws of Zambia.
It is alleged that the students, jointly and whilst acting together, conducted themselves in a manner likely to cause the breach of peace.
When the matter came up for commencement of trial before magistrate Ireen Wishimanga, the state informed the court that the witnesses in the matter who, are the arresting officers, were not before the court.
The matter was proposed for adjournment to March 10, 2014 for commencement of trial but the defence objected to the date saying some of the students will be writing their mid-year examinations on that day.
The Magistrate said since some of the accused persons will be writing their exams on the day which was set for trial, the defence should avail the court with the examination timetable on March 3, 2014, the day when the matter will come up for mention.
Magistrate Wishimanga further said the timetable would help the court to fix a convenient day for commencement of trial in the matter when all the students will not be writing their examinations.
She further said the date for commencement of trial in the matter should be set in March not April because April was too far.
The matter has since been adjourned to March 3, 2014 for mention and fixing of a trial date in the matter.