6 March 2013

Zambia: Kabwe Church Wanted Blood - Witness

A Kapiri Mposhi District man who is appearing in court with two others on charges that they had offered children for sale to a Kabwe-based church has revealed that the church had requested them to take children for donation of blood.

The accused person in opening his defence, said yesterday that after seeing that the Church was not willing to take the children, the church leaders rushed to the police to report that they were selling children.

This is in a case in which Johns Chiinga (Sr), 46, his son Nickson Chiinga, 29, and Notson Chiinga, 20, a nephew are facing four counts of conspiracy to murder.

The three are alleged to have conspired to murder Johns Chiinga Jr, Masiku Phiri, Yvonne Chitentabunga and Belinda Chiinga on June 13, 2012 whom they allegedly offered for sale at K260 million at Light Community Church in Kabwe.

Chiinga Sr testified before Kabwe High Court Judge-in-Charge Eddie Sikazwe that he has three wives with 27 children and denied the charge that he wanted to sell his son and three of his grandchildren describing the assertion as a fabrication.

Chiinga Sr and two others who were found with a case to answer and put on defence maintained that he had sent his son and nephew to Kabwe to buy petrol and diesel for his motor bike and hammermill but was shocked to hear a story from the police that he had sent the two to look for market and sell the children in question.

"My lord the story of selling children is not true because after my son and nephew had offered to donate blood to the church, the church insisted that they wanted children's blood to be donated and not elderly people but after seeing that the two were not cooperative, the church members rushed to the police where they reported that they wanted to sell children which is not true," he said.

In January, this year, the three were found with a case to answer after the State closed its case after calling five witnesses among them a police officer testifying that the accused persons hinted that there were more than 20 children lined up for sale.

Kasanda Police criminal investigations officer (CIO) Albert Chama told Mr Justice Sikazwe that during the course of investigations, he was informed that 22 other children were available for sale, citing poverty as the reason why the children were for sale.

Mr Chama told the court that the two children were being sold between K71 million and K60 million and that before the arrest of the mastermind, Notson and Nickson said they were sent by their father.

Hearing continues today.

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