By Lawyer Gilbert Phiri (HH’s Lawyer)
COUNTDOWN TO TREASON TRIAL
The second Overt Act that Mr. Hakainde Hichilema and other
accused persons face concerns alleged obstruction of the Mongu
Limulunga Road on 8th April. The allegation is that the
incarcerated accused persons worked with 60 other drivers on
the said Road in order to cause the death of the President of
Zambia with the intention of taking over government.
Now this is such a laughable and plainly silly charge that has
unfortunately made this country a laughing stock and I have
struggled to see what the overt act is here. There is no overt
act here. None at all!!! Is the overt act that of driving on
the road? For the sake of the analysis, Let us assume driving a
car to a traditional ceremony is the overt act…
The state (DPP) must then prove beyond reasonable doubt that
the accused persons were:
1. Driving cars on the road. If the state can’t prove just this
simple issue then this alleged overt act cannot be proved.
Witnesses must come to court and testify that they saw each
accused person driving a specific vehicle.
2. Maybe, because we dealing with fantasy charges here, the DPP
may strive to prove that the drivers of the 60 vehicles were
under the forceful command and control of the accused persons
to drive cars on this road and did so under fear. You can see
how silly this whole alleged overt act is! But it gets even
3. Apart from proving that vehicles were driven by the accused,
the state must demonstrate that the collective intention of the
accused persons driving cars on that Mongu Limulunga road was
to cause the death of the President.
We shall pause here. If this was a script of a cartoon show, it
would be funny but this is real! Colossal amounts of money will
be spent on this circus (sorry) trial. Now, not even a Sangoma
or a prophet can satisfactorily prove in court the intention of
people in a convoy of cars driving to attend a traditional
ceremony! Why do silly politicians want to waste tax payers’
money and valuable time of Judicial officers and lawyers trying
an issue of highly nonsensical value, if anything?
4. For a judge to reach a conclusion that the state (DPP) has
proved this overt act, he has to firstly believe that driving a
car on the way to a traditional ceremony is capable of being an
( Anyone who has been through First Year of Law School anywhere
on the planet since records began is, beyond a shadow of a
doubt, incapable of reaching such a conclusion) !
5. Assuming such a judge exists who is capable of believing
anything, he must further be convinced by the state prosecutors
that a passenger of a vehicle coming from behind with three (3)
sweeping police cars ahead of his vehicle was put in danger by
slow moving vehicles he encountered in front of his car but all
moving in the same direction!!
Don’t forget that what the state has to prove is that the
intention of more than 60 people driving slowly to the Kuomboka
ceremony was to kill or grievously injure the President so that
HH can take over as President.
Further, the state has to show that had the President died on
that road, HH would have taken over government despite the
provisions of the current constitution which would make the
Vice President an immediate successor of an incumbent who dies
Now only the PF politicians know how this overt act will be
proved to the satisfaction of any judge.
Let us wait and see…countdown will continue tomorrow …