28 December 2012

Zambia: Two Suspects Deny Stealing FRA Maize

A PRISON warder and another person yesterday pleaded not guilty to 28 counts of theft of more than 8,000 bags of maize belonging to Food Reserve Agency (FRA) worth about K600 million.

They appeared before Kabwe principal resident magistrate John Mbuzi.

Dallas Tembo a prison warder at Kamfinsa State Prison, 39 and Cardiman Ngoma 34, unemployed from Lusaka's Lilanda Township are jointly charged with theft.

On June 30, last year, the two allegedly stole 430 bags of maize valued at K27 million entrusted to them by the FRA to transport maize from Mwachisompola satellite depot in Chibombo to Natuseko Main Depot.

The two are also alleged to have stolen more than 8,000 bags of maize between June and August, last year valued at K677 million.

State prosecutor Wisdom Hatimbula applied for an adjournment.

The magistrate has set January 29, next year as date for commencement of trial, while police bond has been extended.

Meanwhile, two women were yesterday locked up in the holding cell for making noise in court.

Magistrate Mary Simpungwe asked the two to show cause why they should not be cited for contempt for disrupting court proceedings.

The two responded that she should forgive them if she wanted to.

This prompted the magistrate to order that they be detained for showing disrespect for the court.

They were later released and taken to the chamber to apologise but the two still refused.

One of the woman, who was detained had come to court involving a defilement case.

Ms Simpungwe later ordered for the release.

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