Wednesday, July 24, 2024

Mumbi Phiri ‘s Prolonged detention is Politically Motivated-Peter Sinkamba


Green Party President Peter Sinkamba has said that the Minister of Justice’s reported assertions that the prolonged detention of Patriotic Front (PF) Deputy Secretary General Mumbi Phiri is within the law is is neither here nor there at this point.

In a statement posted on his Facebook page, Mr Sinkamba said that the minister has no constitutional authority to determine whether the prolonged detention of Mrs Phiri is lawful or not, adding that the issue of whether Mrs Phiri is lawfully detained is neither here nor there at this point.

Mr Sinkamba said that her detention is politically motivated because of her political views and called have called upon the State to either promptly take her to court or release her unconditionally.

Below is the full statement

Minister of Justice is reported to have said that the incarceration of PF Deputy Secretary General Mumbi Phiri is within the law. We beg to differ with the honorable Minister on this point.

Zambia is a Constitutional democracy Republic. The sovereignty authority of the Republic has been assigned to various public and Constitutional officers. With respect to determination of whether an act is lawful or not has been constitutionally delegated to courts of law. A minister has no authority to determine so. An honorable Haimbe being a State Counsel, he is better place to know this than I do. Put simply, he has no constitutional authority to determine whether the prolonged detention of Mrs Phiri is lawful or not. So, the issue of whether Mrs Phiri is lawfully detained in neither here no there at this point.

The issue we have with the prolonged detention is the motivation for her detention. Most of us hold the view that her detention is politically motivated because of her political views.

Hence, we have called upon the State to either promptly take her to court or release her unconditionally.

The issue raised by the honorable Minister of first in, first out is neither here nor there.

Globally, the problem with political persecution is that the executive can use all sorts of excuses to punish their political opponents. Usually, the State uses institutions such as police, secret service and prisons to achieve these ends, many a time fronting cases that are unbailable such as treason, murder, stealing motor vehicle, etc.
We think that the case of Mrs. Mumbi Phiri falls in the category of politically motivated cases because the charge of murder that has been slapped against her does not add up, just like the case of treason that was levelled against President HH.

In a case of murder, the prosecution must prove beyond every reasonable doubt that the said action or inaction of the accused was intentional and with the knowledge that death or grievous bodily harm was its probable or foreseeable consequence. In simple terms, this means that it must be proved that although the deceased died as a result of what the accused did, the action of the accused was intentional, with the intent of killing the victim or causing grievous bodily harm to the victim.

Intents or intentions (which is called mensrea in legal parlance) is very crucial in criminal trials. It is what determines wether the accused be convicted for murder or for manslaughter. When the prosecution fails to prove that the action of the accused person is intentional to cause the death of the victim, the accused will be convicted for manslaughter instead of murder.

As a decorated lawyer of high standing in the country, the honorable Minister knows too well that in criminal trials, the standard of proof is “beyond reasonable doubt”. In simple terms, this means that the prosecution must prove that the accused committed the crime beyond every atom of doubt that the blind will see and the deaf will hear; that the accused person truly committed that crime visible to the blind and audible to the deaf. The honorable Minister also knows too well that it is usually the person who alleges that another person committed a crime that has the onus to prove that the accused person really committed the crime in question.

Now, when we read the story of the murder that occurred in Kaoma, and how it happened, the offence for which Mrs. Mumbi Phiri is alleged to have committed, it is very clear, even from blind and the deaf that in her case, the three ingredients of a murder case are lacking and cannot be proved by the State in any reasonable tribunal.

So, the only reason why State continues to incarcerate her can only be on political motivation grounds.

We earnestly advise the UPND Government to refrain or desist from such tempting abuse.

In closing, we once again appeal to President HH to intervene in the matter and release Mrs. Mumbi Phiri from this clear case of injustice.


    • I was very disappointed with Haimbe’s statement. Makes you wonder what happens to brilliant lawyers when they are in politics.
      Surely, the law says take someone to court within 48hrs, but he says it’s normal because it’s a murder case without bail.
      Reminds me of Makebi claiming Edgar Lungu never held office.
      Trying to defend your government at the cost of losing your credibility.

    • The greatest turncoats we have had in our nation have been lawyers and journalists. Just show me one journalist or lawyer who hasnt changed colour as soon as government has appointed him or her!

    • Don’t you think it’s time we put this phrase POLITICALLY MOTIVATED from our dictionary? As it’s if Upnd lose the next election, there will be more politically motivated arrests too…oh yes even PF thought they would be there forever.

  1. “…..The issue raised by the honorable Minister of first in, first out is neither here nor there……..”

    Why ????

    Are you saying there are people accused of mudere awaiting trial before mumbi phiri ?

  2. Mumbi phiri was so used by lungu and the PF to brutalise the opposition………..

    She was the loudest calling for treason of HH and was instrumental in mwaliteta being locked up for over a year because of the city airport incident ……..

    Mumbi phiri was often to be found in leading violent PF attacks………..

    Apart from instructing the barber to pull the trigger……..

    She deserves to be imprison, not remand

  3. At the end of the day she may be heavily rewarded for damages…
    unfortunately the money won’t come from Haimbes pocket but from government coffers.

    • You are not telling us why she should jump the queue of those people charged with murder awaiting trial ……….?????

    • Spaka.. I am of two things here
      1) When Upnd members were incarcerated during PF time you always called for their speed release
      2) The queue angle did not occur in your mind but until Mr Haimbe created it.
      You can add a third point.

    • Haimbe did not create it, it is a fact.
      There are people awaiting trial before phiri. We always knew that. It is not made up.

      And who from the opposition, was charged with murder and we called for their release ?

      Unfortunately over crawding is the weakness of our judicial system

    • She should not jump the que. They shouldnt be detained in the first place. Dont adopt things you cant do. If you cant match your constitution make another one. Stop advertising you are clean when you are dirty

  4. There are suspects that have been detented infinitely without trial I dont see these politicans coming out in the open for them.

  5. I feel sorry for mumbi phiri ………..

    She was used and encouraged to lead PF barbaric attacks against the opposition.

    She was the loudest and most violent of PF women………….

    She has herself to blame.

    Right after the elections , mumbi phiri knew the gravity of her situation,………

    she publicly announced retairing from politics and ran away to her farm to hide, she knew it was matter of time…………..

  6. If I was in zambia………….

    I would commission a documentary about the times and life of mumbi phiri………….

    The most proactive and violent woman in PF…………

  7. Mumbi Phiri has herself to blame for this predicament.
    She was not involved in the murder but clearly knows who committed the crime. She was in the company of the murderer and saw what happened.
    If I was in her shoes, I would have quickly turned into a state witness and later walked to my freedom.
    Who is she trying to protect?

  8. Is it too much to ask, to simply say take the accused to court?
    I thought an arrest means the investigation is done and the state has enough facts to proceed with trial?
    So why arrest someone if you are not ready to proceed with trial?

  9. If pf lawyers are worth their salt MP can at the very least take plea…as for the article above Peter often writes sensible things but in this one he is offside….if he has sight of the docket he would make the assertions he does short of that its simply an academic exercise

  10. Another useless and empty politician, how can a murder charge or case be politically motivated. Zambia is a paradise for politicians who need a brain transplant. Mumbi Phiri should have been in jail when the murder took place but she was protected by the most corrupt, incompetent, thieving and violent President Zambia will ever have in a hundred years. If the previous Government and its President had upheld the constitution this your Mumbi would have been arrested, if that were the case was Sinkamba going to say that is political persecution? What is special about Mumbi who public confessed that she was at the murder scene, this woman actively sponsored,abetted and aided Pf thugs to cause mayhem and violence. Where does Zambia get these politicians who suffer from selective amnesia…

  11. come from. Sinkamba where you living in Zambia when Keith Mukata was arrested,prosecuted and jailed?

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