By GRACE CHAILE LESOETSA
THERE has been no demand by the Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC) for information relating to PF’s source of campaign funds for the 2021 August general elections, Attorney General, Kabesha Mulilo has said.
Mr Mulilo in a defence filed in the Lusaka High Court explained that former PF Secretary General Mr Davis Mwila and ex media director Mr Antonio Mwanza were questioned over their alleged involvement in money laundering activities.
He said that Mr Mwanza had personally volunteered to go to DEC offices although at the end of the interrogation, he told the media that he was questioned about PF’s source of campaign funding.
He has thus urged the Lusaka High Court not to entertain the lawsuit by Mr Mwila and the party protesting investigations by security wings as it is a ploy to circumvent criminal investigation and possible prosecution through civil proceeding.
This is a matter in which Mr Mwila in his then capacity as SG sued Government on September 28, 2021, in the Lusaka High Court claiming that their members are being threatened by DEC with prosecution if they do not disclose the source of campaign funds for the August 12 general elections.
Mr Mwila demanded that Government pays damages for intimidation and harassment of the PF members.
The party is also seeking damages for misrepresentation and defamation of character following allegations by DEC that the PF’s source of fund was linked to money laundering.
But Mr Mulilo in his defence stated that both Mr Mwila and Mr Mwanza were not summoned in their positional party capacity but in their personal capacity.
He added that no pressure has been exerted on the junior PF members to disclose the source of funding for campaign activities.
“The defendant shall say at trial that Antonio Mwanza volunteered to go to the Commission offices in the presence of the media, and he informed the media that the commission was questioning him about the source of campaign funds used in the general elections, when in fact he was being questioned regarding alleged Money laundering,” Mr Mulilo stated.
“The Commission did not summon Mr Mwila in his capacity as SG of PF but in his personal capacity. The defendant shall also deny that Mr Teddy Mambepa was not called in for interrogation but merely for inquiry into the allegations of money laundering,” he stated.
Mr Mulilo stated that DEC is mandated under the Prohibition and Prevention of money laundering Act no. 14 of 2001 to probe into money laundering and related issues and may legally summon any person with relevant information on such a matter and PF members are not an exception.
“The plaintiff is merely attempting to derail on-going criminal investigations in which some PF members are implicated. That this matter is frivolous, vexatious and an abuse of court Process,” he contended.