UPND youth chairman Obvious Mwaliteta and four others who sued the Attorney General for false imprisonment following their acquittal in a case they were accused of intercepting the August 11, 2016 Gen 12 forms for announcing election results have asked the Lusaka High Court to grant them leave to enter judgment against the defendant due to his failure to file defence.
Mwaliteta and his co-accused are demanding over K700,000 for special damages.
The plaintiffs, through their lawyers Gilbert Phiri and Keith Mweemba, are contending that from the time Attorney General Likando Kalaluka was served with an affidavit of summons and a statement of claim in February this year, “he has never bothered to enter appearance and defense in this matter and is as such in default of defence and appearance”.
Phiri and Mweemba, in an affidavit in support of summons for an order for leave to enter judgment against the defendant, are claiming that they undertook a search and discovered that Kalaluka was yet to enter appearance and defence.
According to the duo, it is trite law that in proceedings against the defendant, no judgment in default of pleadings or defense can be entered without leave of this court.
It is based on the foregoing that they are asking the court to grant the plaintiffs leave to enter judgment against the defendant due to his failure to file defense.
In their statement of claim filed in February this year, they sought damages for malicious prosecution, aggravated and exemplary, general damages, interests and any other reliefs as the court may deem fit.
The plaintiffs claimed that they were arrested on August 14, 2016 on charges of aggravated robbery without reasonable and probable cause.
Mwaliteta, who is former Lusaka and Southern provinces minister, and others were also claiming to have further been accused of stealing a handbag, cash and a Blackberry mobile phone all valued at K4,000.
They are now saying they were falsely imprisoned and by the reason of the foregoing matters, they sustained loss of liberty and damage suffered for 357 days.
The plaintiffs accused the state police of having fabricated evidence against them and caused them to be detained on aggravated robbery charges merely on account of being found at the offices of the Electoral Commission of Zambia during the time of the presidential and parliamentary elections of 2016.
They argued that there was no evidence that they were involved in the physical attack of the electoral officers at the scene of the incident.
The plaintiff say investigations which led to their arrest were improper, prejudiced and biased as the police ought to have known that their treatment in a ‘high-handed manner” was unlawful and unreasonable.