RB not a criminal, says police witness

former President Rupiah Banda
former President Rupiah Banda

THERE are no fingerprints in the police criminal database indicating that former President Rupiah Banda has ever been convicted of any criminal offence by the courts of law, a Lusaka Magistrate’s Court has heard.


Charles Zyambo, 40, a fingerprint expert with the Zambia Police, told principal resident magistrate Kenneth Mulife yesterday that his search at police headquarters for a criminal record against Mr Banda was negative.


Mr Zyambo was testifying in a case in which former minister of Justice Wynter Kabimba, The Post Newspapers and its owner Fred M’membe are charged with contempt of court and libel.
Mr Banda wants the Lusaka Magistrate’s Court to cite Kabimba, M’membe and The Post Newspaper for contempt of court for commenting on matters that are before the courts of law.


“My investigation tells me that there are no records in our criminal database matching the fingersprints samples of His Excellency the former President Rupiah Banda. This simply tells us that he has never been convicted of any criminal offence,” he said.
Mr Zyambo said during examination-in-chief that he compared Mr Banda’s fingerprint samples with the fingerprints kept in the police criminal database and could not find any that matched those of the former head of state.



He said a criminal is someone who has been arrested, charged, found with a case to answer and convicted by the courts of law.
“I need to stress beyond reasonable doubt that the fingerprints I searched in our criminal record database, of one Rupiah Banda, contained characteristics that were not identical to those we keep,” he said.


In cross-examination, Mr Zyambo maintained that he did not find any fingerprints that were matching with Mr Banda’s in the police criminal database.
Trial continues on August 24 and 25.