FORMER Lusaka province minister Bowman Lusambo has finally lost his parliamentary seat for the Kabushi constituency as the Constitutional Court has upheld the decision of the Ndola High Court to declare his election void.
The Constitutional Court has ruled that Lusambo’s election procured was by fraud and was marred with violence.
Constitutional Court judge Palan Mulonda, on behalf of others, has ruled that judge Edward Musona cannot be faulted for attributing violence perpetrated by the NATO forces to Lusambo in Ndola’s Skyways and Kabushi wards as he was always present at the scenes of violence.
He said Lusambo and the NATO forces seemed to be inseparable because they arrived in the same vehicle during campaigns in the said wards within the allotted time by the Electoral Commission of Zambia.
The distraught-looking Lusambo walked out of the courtroom at 11:30 hours upon learning that the judgement was not going in his favour.
Last year, the Ndola High Court nullified the election of Mr Lusambo on grounds of electoral malpractices.
In this matter, United Party for National Development (UPND) losing candidate Bernard Kanengo petitioned Mr Lusambo of the Patriotic Front (PF) citing malpractice before and during the August 12 General elections.
Lusaka High Court Judge Edward Musona sitting in Ndola nullified the seat stating wide spread violence noting that Mr Lusambo did not disassociate himself from his militia group known ‘the Nato Forces’, which was attacking the electorates.
“I am satisfied that the respondent had knowledge of the violence and his alibi regarding the violence episodes which were successfully challenged by the petitioner,” judge Musona said.
During hearing of the petition, Mr Kanengo narrated to the court how he went to hide at a mosque after the respondent’s supporters known as the Nato Forces searched and chased after him as he ran for his dear life with Mr Lusambo and his Nato Forces in hot pursuit.
The Petitioner said he was dissatisfied with the Electoral Commission of Zambia’s declaration of Mr Lusambo as the winner of the August 12 parliamentary seat for Kabushi Constituency because he breached the electoral code of conduct.
The UPND candidate also told court that the Nato Forces poured hot porridge on his supporters in Masala.
“On July 17, I was informed by Robson Kapambwe and Andrew Mulenga on how they were attacked by the Nato Forces. The people were assaulted after the attackers saw them putting on UPND regalia,” he said.
But Mr Lusambo who is popularly known as the ‘bulldozer’, at the time, dismissed the allegations that he bribed choir groups stating that he has between 2015 and 2021 attended over 40 churches in his constituency in his capacity as area lawmaker.
“As an MP, my job is to interact with the people and being a Christian my Lord, from 2015 to date, I have visited more than 40 churches and I have interacted with congregants including choir members, ” he said.
Mr Lusambo further dismissed allegations that his agent, Mrs Nyirenda rounded up UPND members and treated them to a banquet of food.
He described the allegations that he gave a group of young men K4000 and also promised them slug dumps once they voted for him as total imagination and fabrication.
“On a material day, I was in Lusaka preparing campaign materials for our party on the province,” he said.
The nullification now paves way for the by-election in Kabushi constituency.