MMD president Nevers Mumba and seven other party officials yesterday spent a night at Kamfinsa prison cells after their bail application was deliberately bungled by authorities.
This was after the group which was arrested on its way back toKitwewas charged with one count of unlawful assembly, the charge they denied yesterday in the Kitwe Magistrates Court.
Dr Mumba, Muchinga Member of Parliament (MP) Howard Kunda, Kafulafuta MP James Chishiba, Masaiti MP Michael Katambo, Lufwanyama MP Annie Chungu appeared before theKitwe Magistrate Courtand pleaded not guilty to one count of unlawful assembly in Kalulushi.
Others were Deputy MMD National Secretary Chembe Nyangu, Copperbelt MMD Women Chairperson Edith Mataka Nkhoma and Greenford Kalinda.
Dr Mumba described his arrest as an assult on democracy and his fundermental human rights.
Speaking to journalist he condemned the heavy hand of police to stop him as a political leader from speaking to members of the public.
Particulars of the offence are that the accused persons on December 10, this year, acting with others unknown did take part in an unlawful assembly contrary to section 75 of the Penal Code.
They appeared before Principal Resident magistrate Penjani Lamba.
And the court has granted all the accused persons a bail ofK2million each in their own recognisance.
The bail conditions further included that each accused person should raise two sureties. Ms Irene Kunda representing the MMD team said the accused persons were of fixed abode and that the offence was bailable and a misdemeanor.Ms Kunda said the accused person would not run away and that they have already spent a night in the cells.
The case was adjourned to December 24 for mention and January 12, 2013 for hearing.
Dr Mumba and the seven other accused were bundled in a Toyota Land cruiser escorted by two Land cruisers loaded with police officers clad in riot gear as they were being driven from Kitwe East Police Station to the Magistrate Court amid tight security.Mr Mumba looked unshaken together with the other seven accused as they continued to wave an MMD symbol to their supporters and sympathizers at the Kitwe East Police Station and at the Magistrate Court.