PILOT Patrick Kawanu who is in detention at Kabwata Police Station in connection with last week’s gold scam has asked the Lusaka High Court to compel the Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC) to release him from the filthy police cells.
Kawanu who is an employee of Mahogany Air, said the offence of giving false information to public officer which he stands charged is bailable hence there’s in no need for the police to have him under their watch after 48 hours when he has sureties lined up to secure his release.
In an affidavit in support of ex-parte notice of motion for writ of Habeas Corpus Ad Subjiciendum sworn Bwalya Nachimba of J and M Advocates, the pilot said the unreasonable delay in granting him bond and his continuous detention is unreasonable and unconditional.
“Kawanu is being held in an unsanitary, poorly ventilated and very crowded police cell at Kabwata police station despite the offense being bondable,”Nachimba said.
She said the Police and DEC have not given a valid reason for the continued detention of Kawanu on a bailable charge despite the sureties being ready to secure his release.
“It is for this reason that we crave the Court’s indulgence to order the respondents to produce the applicant before it so that they can show cause why he is being held in detention on bondable and bailable charges,”said Nachimba.
“I respectfully apply on behalf of the applicant to this Court to issue forthwith a writ directing the officer in-charge and others who may have control of Kawanu at Kabwata police station or any other police station that the applicant may be moved to have the applicant’s body before this Court after receipt of such writ to undergo and receive all and singular such matters and things this Court Shall then and there consider of and concerning the applicant on his behalf.”
Kawanu who is jointly charged with his boss Dr Jim Belemu the proprietor of Mahogany Air and representative of South Africa’s MTF, Oswald Diangamo and Shadreck Kasanda could not be arraigned before the Lusaka Magistrate’s Court today as prosecutors are attending a capacity building workshop in Livingstone.
The quartet who appeared before Lusaka chief resident magistrate Davies Chibwili last week Friday could not be tried in relation to their frustrated gold scam involving US$5.7 million.
The State was awaiting to indict the four together with the Egyptians who had requested to seek medical attention.
The Egyptians are identified as Micheal Botros, Walid Abelsayed, Yasser Elshishtawy, Mounir Gerges Awad, Mohamed Gouda, Tennis Demooiy, Del-a Cruse Castilla, Ali Abdull, and Noha Nadim.
The 13 were cornered by the Drug Enforcement Commission on August 14, 2023 following intelligence information that they were about to strike a dubious deal involving 602 ‘fake’ gold bars weighing 127.2 Kg.
By Mwaka Ndawa
Kalemba August 21, 2023.