Fri, 09 Dec 2016 08:20:06 +0000
By Gwendolyn Mchenga
FREELANCE journalist Chanda Chimba III is still languishing in prison after his two-year jail sentence on charges of unlawful printing and publication of two tabloids and disposal of property suspected to be proceeds of crime because the court has again failed to hear his bail application pending an appeal.
Chimba III will have to spend more days in prison before his bail application can be decided by Ndola Magistrate Obister Musukwa who failed to travel to Lusaka to hear the application and is only expected to determine the matter on December 16.
Last week a bail application by Chimba’s lawyer, Charles Lisita, was adjourned to December 8 due to the absence of the State prosecutor Martin Mayembe of the Anti-Corruption Commission who was reported to be attending to other matters in Chipata.
Chimba III had applied for bail pending an appeal against his two-year jail sentence and K1,000 fine in default 12 months imprisonment.
He was found guilty last month of two counts of unlawful printing and publication of two tabloids namely “News of Our Times” and “Stand up for Zambia”.
He was also convicted on one count of disposal of property suspected to be proceeds of crime.
In his three grounds of appeal Chimba has accused the magistrate of erring in law and fact by holding that there was duplicity in all the counts charged.
He said the trial magistrate erred in law and fact by declining to consider amending the forfeiture of proceeds of crime charge.
Chimba added that that further grounds maybe filed upon perusal of the court record and judgment.
He has applied to the High Court to be heard although entered out of time.
In the same matter, Magistrate Musukwa acquitted former Information and Broadcasting Minister, Ronnie Shikapwasha, and his former permanent secretary, Sam Phiri, on abuse of authority of office.