By GRACE CHAILE LESOETSA
INCARCERATED Henry Kapoko has applied for constitutional bail in the Lusaka High Court pending determination of his appeal against the nine-year conviction on theft by public servant and money laundering charges.
Kapoko, a former Ministry of Health Chief Human Resource Development Officer has been in prison from December 27, 2017 and is scheduled to be released on December 12, 2023.
He was convicted on theft by public servant and money laundering charges involving over K6.8 million.
Kapoko, in his application for bail stated that if bail was not granted, he is likely to serve the substantial part of the nine-year sentence imposed on him by the time the appeal is heard.
He stated that he is able to provide credible sureties and abide by any conditions the courts may impose as part of the bail conditions.
The applicant stated that his appeal which he launched before the Court of Appeal over a year ago is yet to be heard.
“That even if the Court of Appeal decided to hear my appeal today, it would take the court over one year to read the voluminous record of appeal and it would take the court another year to deliver the judgement which consequently means that I would have served the entire sentence imposed on me by the High Court,” Kapoko stated.
He stated that no prejudice will be occasioned to the State if the bail application is granted.
He explained that his initial applications for constitutional bail had been declined by the High Court and Court of Appeal.
Kapoko stated he is being prejudiced by the fact that he is in jail while nothing is being done to ensure that his appeal is expeditiously heard by the Court of Appeal.
“That the court imposed a custodial sentence on me when the offence of money laundering has an option for a fine and no aggravating substances were established,” he stated.
In 2017, the Lusaka Magistrate’s Court convicted Kapoko for theft by public servant and money laundering and sentenced him to 18 years imprisonment with hard labour.
He however appealed against both the conviction and sentence and the appeal was partially upheld as the sentence imposed on him was quashed by the High Court and was reduced to nine years imprisonment.