PRESIDENT Hakainde Hichilema has discontinued the matter where he sued the State claiming compensation for the damage allegedly caused to his property during his arrest on treason charges in 2017.
In this matter, Mr Hichilema (then as opposition leader) and five others, in May of 2021, commenced the action in the Lusaka High Court that it orders the State to pay compensatory damages equivalent in value to monies lost and the property that was looted, damaged and destroyed at his home during what he termed as an unlawful operation to arrest him on charges of treason carried out on April 10 and 11 in 2017.
He also sought damages for loss of use of motor vehicles, being Toyota Hilux ALZ 2757 and ALZ 2710 for the periods of 34 and 33 days respectively during which they were under the custody of the State.
The five include Mr Hamusonde Hamaleka, Mr Pretorius Haloba, senior private secretary State house Wallace Chakawa, Mr Laston Mulilanduba and Mr Muleya Hachinda.
On January 7, 2022, Mr Hichilema applied to the Lusaka High Court to stay proceedings until he vacates office.
This is on the basis that the President has no legal capacity to sue or to be sued under Article 98(2) of the Republican constitution.
But according to a consent order filed in court by Messrs. ZS Legal Practitioner, the Head of State withdrew the application to stay the proceedings.
“That the first plaintiff herein wholly discontinues this action against the defendant,” read the consent order.
The other four are expected to be compensated by the State and await assessment for damages by the Court.