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Witness breaks down in Tasila Tembo murder case

By GRACE CHAILE LESOETSA

A State witness broke down in court yesterday as she testified that murder accused, Nigel Mwaba, sent a message saying that Tasila Tembo was an animal who did not deserve to live.

Ms Carol Phiri Simfukwe , who was  Dr Tembo’s best-friend, told Lusaka High Court Judge Wilfred Muma, that Mwaba, verbally abused the victim.

Judge Muma had to stand down trial for ten minutes after Ms Simfukwe began to cry in the middle of her testimony.

This is a matter in which Zambia Army solder, Lieutenant  Mwaba, then aged 33, is alleged to have murdered his girlfriend, Dr Tembo,47, a former Ministry of Health deputy spokesperson, between October 25 and 26,2020,after a dispute .

He however denied committing the offence.

During continued trial, Ms Simfukwe narrated that her best friend, Dr Tembo, introduced her to Mwaba in 2018 and later confessed that she was in love with him.

She stated that just about three to four months into the pairs’ relationship, Mwaba moved into Dr Tembo’s house in Meanhood, Ibex, Lusaka.

The witness stated that she only got to know that Mwaba was her step brother after Dr Tembo mentioned the name of her potential mother in law.

Ms Simfukwe stated that on October 14, 2020 , Dr Tembo had called her saying Mwaba had a debt of K9,000 and was pressuring  her to help settle the debt. But Mwaba was furious when he learnt that the girlfriend had engaged his mother (Julien Mukula), Ms Simfukwe and Winston Phiri over the debt issue.

Ms Simfukwe said that her best friend decided to end the relationship because of the continued verbal abuse but Mwaba threatened to post nude pictures of Dr Tembo on social media.

“I immediately called Nigel in order to reason with him, to persuade him not to post the nude pictures on social media but he was adamant that he would.  When I couldn’t reason with him, I cut the phone. And he immediately sent me a text which read,’ Tasila is an animal, she doesn’t deserve to live’,” Ms Simfukwe broke down.

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