UPND’s Isaac Zulu acquitted in Rufunsa killing

The Lusaka High Court has acquitted a United Party for National Development (UPND) member Isaac Zulu who was accused of murdering Menyani Zulu in Rumfunsa during violence that characterized THE WARD by-election in the area.

High Court Judge Dominic Sichinga this morning acquitted Mr Zulu who was accused of murdering Menyani Zulu, a Patriotic Front (PF) cadre in Rufunsa during a ward by-election in November 2012.

The case had been politically charged as the death of the Menyani Zulu directly blamed on the UOND by President Michael Sata but subsequent investigations revealed that Menyani Zulu was killed by fellowPF cadres in a dispute over money.

Judge Sichinga who has been transferred to Kitwe but sat in Lusaka yesterday said the state had failed to prove the case and that the evidence adduced in court was not collaborated.

Isaac Zulu who was at the material day employed as a driver to Siavonga UPND Member of Parliament Kennedy Hamudulu was represented by Gilbert Phiri of PNP Advocates and Martha Mushipi.

Meanwhile the Lusaka High Court yesterday jailed a 23-year old-man of Kabwata Site and Service to 25 years imprisonment with hard labor for aggravated robbery.

Judge Mwila Chitoba  sent Joe Banda to prison after he said the prosecution had proved its case beyond any reasonable doubt.

Passing judgment in Lusaka yesterday Justice Chitoba  said it was not in dispute that  Banda and six others beat up and stole a Black Berry cellphone,K 560 cash,two spare tyres, Sub woofer ,Pioneer speaker and a pair of shoes all valued at K4,560.00 belonging to Mr Moses Kangwa.

He said he was satisfied with one of the witnesses, detective Moses Kafula of Chawama Police Post because he found his evidence reliable and credible  because he did not at any time change his stories during cross examination.

Justice Chitabo said he also relied on Kafula’s evidence when he said he did not uplift finger prints from the knives because nothing was being recovered after conducting the investigations.

This was in reference to the accused defence counsel who told the court that Mr Kafula should have lifted the finger prints to link Banda to the offence.

Justice Chitoba said it was not in dispute that Banda was identified by the victim, Mr Kangwa as one of the seven persons who beat and stole from him.

He stated that the court was also suspicious as to why Banda kept on looking down throughout his defence and when speaking lowered his voice.

Justice Chitabo further said he was satisfied with Mr Kangwa’s testimony and Kafula’s as they corroborated.

Justice Chitabo said the application by defence counsel to acquit Banda because he was mistakenly identified by the victim was not enough because the whole incidence took approximately 40 minutes which was enough time to identify and recognize the accused. He said the identification by one person was enough to prove that Banda was part of the robbers who were involved in the offence.

But in his defence Banda denied being part of the team which robbed Mr  Kangwa and claimed that he was only mistakenly identified.

Banda said he was coming from a bar where he went to buy some beer because he was going to spend a night at a mourning house when he was apprehended by the police at the attack as he passed by the scene.

Banda said he tried to run away  from the police for fear of being apprehended for loitering (Shishita).

But the arresting officer Mr Kafula said during his investigations Banda failed to tell the police about the person who died when he told the police that he was coming from the funeral.

He further told the court that Banda was not carrying any beer when he was apprehended when he was found at the scene of crime.