The Economic and Financial Crimes Court has cleared former Tourism Minister Ronald Chitotela in the matter where he was charged with two counts of possessing property suspected to be proceeds of crime.
Lusaka Principal Resident Magistrate Jennifer Bwalya said that the immunity granted to Mr Chitotela by the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) to stop him from prosecution is still in force and proceeding with the matter will be subjecting him to double punishment.
Magistrate Bwalya said proceeding with the matter while the said settlement undertaking remained in force would be subjecting the accused to the evils of some form of double jeopardy which the laws of Zambia frown upon.
She then ordered that Mr Chitotela be discharged with the charges herein and forthwith.
“I therefore agree and find that proceeding with the matter while the said settlement undertaking remained in force would be subjecting the accused to the evils of some form of double jeopardy which the laws of Zambia frown upon,” she said.
“I, therefore, order that Ronald Kaoma Chitotela be and hereby discharged with the charges herein and forthwith,” she added.
Meanwhile, Chitotela has described the matter as mare persecution adding that investigative wings should learn to fight the LAW and not individuals.
“They have been fighting me for a long time and I want to appeal to them to fight the law and not Chitotela,” he said with his lawyers saying that he has been vindicated because the case was unfounded.