Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Cops arrest Nevers

Cops arrest Nevers
By Staff Reporters
Tue 11 Dec. 2012, 12:00 CAT

POLICE on the Copperbelt yesterday apprehended MMD president Nevers Mumba in Lufwanyama, where he was about to address a meeting without a police permit. Meanwhile, the Bank of Zambia is pursuing the MMD over a K4 billion debt owed to liquidated Meridian BIAO Bank Zambia Limited, Commerce Bank Zambia and MOPED Investments Limited.

Copperbelt police commissioner Mary Tembo confirmed the development, saying Mumba would be charged with the offence of unlawful assembly.

"You know, he has been here since Saturday. On Saturday he wanted to cause confusion in Chifubu but we prevailed and today he went to Lufwanyama and he thinks we are not on the ground. So officers apprehended him right from there because the law is very clear; he must have a permit to hold any gathering whether closed-door; we can't allow that," said Tembo.

And according to one of the officers who arrested Mumba, the MMD leader was met by police on the way to a meeting when they picked him.
"We met him on the way, but because we have good informers, they informed us," he said.

The sources said Mumba failed to cooperate with the officers and had a heated argument with them.
According to the officers, police had to wait for him and his entourage that included Muchinga MMD member of parliament Howard Kunda to have a meal at a named lodge in Kalulushi en route to Kitwe Central Police where he was to be detained.

When contacted over his arrest, Mumba said: "It's becoming too much; this is too much, it's too much! It's unfortunate they are using so much police force, trailing us from Ndola to Lufwanyama."
He said he had gone to meet some chiefs and MMD leaders in Lufwanyama when police arrested him.

"And yet chiefs are going to State House every day and we are not raising any issue; they sent a battalion of police to follow me and my entourage in Lufwanyama, I am not going to accept this," Mumba said, "There is no democratic country that stops its people from meeting their leaders and chiefs. If they think they will sustain this, they are mistaken, our theme is 'Don't Kutina'; our spirit is not broken."

He said he was aware that everything was coming from State House and President Michael Sata.
Mumba urged President Sata to inform the police to "back off" and allow them to enjoy their liberties.
"He should respect the opposition and allow our end of year audit of our leadership. I don't need a permit from police to meet our leaders, I don't need a police permit to meet our chiefs. Stop this jungle kind of leadership," he said.

He, however, said Zambia's police, which was one of the professionally trained in the region, was being made to look like losers.
"They (police) are telling us 'it's too much, but we have to follow what Lusaka are telling us'; they can't wait for MMD to bounce back so they can also enjoy liberty," claimed Mumba.

And according to a letter dated October 18, 2011 from Bank of Zambia (BoZ) assistant director-regulatory policy and liquidations Norbert Mumba addressed to MMD national secretary Major Richard Kachingwe, the former ruling party had not settled the K4 billion it owed the Central Bank, the current receivers of Meridian BIAO Bank Zambia Limited (MBBZ), Commerce Bank Zambia Limited and Meridian BIAO Bank and MOPED, all liquidated.

"We write to demand settlement of outstanding debt owed by your party amounting to K4 billion. The breakdown of the debt is as follows: MBBZ K2,801,150,684.93, Moped Investment Limited Debt (MBBZ) K798,348,493.15, CBL K444,550,242.37," read Mumba's leatter.

"You are no doubt aware that the Bank of Zambia (BoZ) and the former liquidation managers have on several occasions written and contacted your party seeking settlement of the debt but to no avail. We now request prompt settlement of the debts and you may wish to call the undersigned to agree terms for settlement."

Meanwhile, National Pensions Scheme Authority has complied with the police's request for it to surrender two motor vehicles that the MMD took to the institution as collateral but are part of a proceeds of crime probe against the party.

NAPSA director-general Charles Mpundu told The Post in an interview yesterday that the Authority handed over the two motor vehicles because it does not want to be seen to be abetting criminality.

"Yes, we did," said Mpundu when asked on the status of the motor vehicles. "They have been with us for some time and they have been surrendered. When there is a matter which borders on criminality, we can't be seen to be abetting. We need to cooperate with the investigative wings. They did put across a request for us to release them and we did that."

Police requested NAPSA to hand over two motor vehicles that the opposition MMD surrendered to the Authority as collateral because they are a subject of criminal investigations.

In a letter dated December 6, 2012 addressed to Mpundu by a G. Masumba, director, on behalf of the Inspector General of Police, the two motor vehicles were part of the investigations into alleged possession of property suspected of being proceeds of crime.

The motor vehicles in question - a Mitsubishi Canter light load vehicle and a Toyota Toyoace bearing registration numbers ALC 6660 and ALC 6630 - are owned by Africa Strategic Transportation Logistics Limited and the MMD secretariat, respectively.

The MMD petitioned the seizure of the 176 motor vehicles which were part of the government joint investigations team's probe into the party campaign materials that were suspected to be proceeds of crime.
"A court petition has been instituted by the Movement for Multi-party Democracy MMD against the state with regard to some of the motor vehicles impounded throughout the country which are the subject of investigations," stated Masumba.

But Mumba said in an interview yesterday that he was not aware of any money the party owed to NAPSA because it had settled its outstanding bills.
"I am not aware of any money that we owe to NAPSA; we settled our bills with them. And what I understand is that we paid all our debts and that is an old matter," he said.

Mumba said nothing had been brought to his table to alert them of the recent claims by NAPSA and not even the party lawyers knew anything.
"Our lawyers would have told me and they have not told me anything so I doubt there is anything but if there is our lawyers will engage us," said.

NAPSA had impounded two MMD vehicles demanding payment of K90.6 million for refurbishment of Lusaka House and has threatened to take action against the former ruling party within seven days in the event of non-compliance.

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