Chilufya remains acquitted over honeybee scandal – ConCourt

The Constitutional Court has dismissed a case challenging the acquittal of former Minister of Health Dr Chitalu Chilufya and eight others, of corruption allegations in connection with the Honeybee drugs scandal.

Peter Zulu, an advocate of the High Court sought a determination of whther it was lawful and in compliance with article 180(4) (C) of the Constitution for the Lusaka Resident Magistrate court to have acquitted the nine on a complaint made by Lusaka lawyer Joseph Chirwa in the absence of authority from the Director of Public Prosecutions to proceed with a private prosecution.

He also questioned whether it was lawful and in compliance with article 180(8) of the Constitution for the resident magistrate Chilando Chibabula to acquit them when Mr Chirwa withdrew his complaint in the absence of authority from the DPP to discontinue the prosecution.

Acquitted alongside Dr Chilufya, are his Permanent Secretary Kakulubelwa Mulalelo, Honeybee Pharmacy Limited and former Ministry of Health Procurement Officer Wilson Lungu.

Others are ex ZAMRA Director Procurement Officer Bonaventure Chilinde, Zakir Husen Motala , Chomba Kaoma, Imran Lunat and Abdurrauf Abdurahim Motala of Honeybee Pharmacy.

This is in a case in which they were facing six counts of willful failure to comply with the law and applicable guidelines relating to procurement, obtaining a pharmaceutical license without complying with lawful authority, uttering false documents, among other charges relating to the procurement and supply of defective products to the Ministry of Health worth US$3,792,761.28.

Mr Lungu filed an application in which he asked the Concourt to dismiss the matter for want of jurisdiction and abuse of court process.

In a ruling on an application delivered by Judge Mathew Chisunka, the court dismissed the matter for want of jurisdiction.

“From the foregoing, it is clear that the two questions for determination in the applicant’s (Mr Zulu) originating summons are not properly before us as they are personalized and highly contentious and can only be determined by way of petition.

We therefore find merit in this application that this court does not have jurisdiction to entertain the applicant’s originating summons due to the wrong mode of commencement employed by the applicant,” said the court.

Others Judges on the bench included deputy president, Arnold Shilimi and Mr Palan Mulonda.

– Daily Nation


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