The Kasama Magistrates’ Court has dismissed the case involving five Radio Mano journalists that were accused of using insulting language against two Patriotic Front officials.
Resident Magistrate Barthromel Kaongo noted that the state has discontinued the matter after receiving instructions from the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) not to proceed with the matter in the interest of press freedom.
The five Radio Mano journalists were arrested by police in Kasama on November 15th 2016 and pleaded not guilty to two counts of using insulting language, contrary to Section 179 Cap 87 of the laws of Zambia.
The five accused were News Editor Tobias Mangani and his Assistant News Editor Patrick Kabwe.
Others were Henry Kangwa, Nzala Hangubo and Abigail Musonda.
In the first count, facts are that on 9th November 2016, the five journalists jointly and whilst acting together did allegedly use insulting language against Charles Kashishi, by saying “mwe mbwa mwe, muli fipuba,” which is directly translated in English as “you dogs, you are fools”.
While in the second count, facts are that on November 9, 2016, the five jointly and acting together did allegedly use insulting language against Yona Chishimba by saying “mwe mbwa mwe, muli fipuba” which is directly translated in English as “you dogs, you are fools”.
Magistrate Kaongo said trial could not commence after the DPP chambers communicated that they will not be proceeding with the matter.