ONCE a student at the esteemed University of Zambia, Henrick Chisenga has traded his textbooks for a three-month stint in the slammer after swiping 16 computers from the higher learning institution.
After admitting to have stolen the computers Chisenga was given a slap on the wrist by the Lusaka Magistrates’ Court which jailed him for breaking into a building and committing a felony.
On August 18, 2022, Chisenga entered the school library under the Agriculture department and stole 16 computers and computer accessories valued at K68, 075.
According to his explanation Chisenga indicated that he got the computers from the computer so that he could install an anti-virus, leaving the institution’s library feeling more like a tech ghost town.
Chisenga’s story didn’t hold water with the magistrate Mutinta Mwenya as she was not buying the explanation he was selling of getting the computers for his NGO project
“It is clear to me that at the time the accused first borrowed the keys that head of department had allowed him access to the lab he collected the computers on pretext he had told the head of department about his
project and he was currently not a student in the school therefore could not do what he did legally,” magistrate Mwenya said.
“A reasonable doubt therefore does exist as to whether Accused was given permission to remove computers for his NGO project which seems unlikely. If it was one computer yes but all the computers were piled in some
dorm and this action does not seem normal to the court that he saw no problem with what he did.”
She said the State had established a prima facie case against Chisenga and convicted him.
In his mitigation Chisenga begged the court for mercy and vowed never to steal again.
Magistrate Mwenya handed him a three months jail term to deter would be offenders and cautioned him against thievery.
By Mwaka Ndawa
Kalemba February 13, 2024.