By ALICE NACHILEMBE
Chingola Municipal Council Senior Legal Officer Jacob Njovu has told Chingola Magistrate Court that the Local Authority has no record that shows that the squatters in the Gymkhana land scandal have any legal documentation from the Council or the Ministry of land.
This is in a matter in which five people have been dragged to count for criminal trespass and are claiming that the Council was aware of their stay in that in the area.
The five are Crispin Simukonda 46, Juma Banda 29, Layment Chisenga 64, Brian Lubumbe 60, and Asafu Banda 47, who between December 1, 2019 and June 6, 2020 willfully but unlawfully entered the property of Chingola District Veterinary Officer Emmanuel Chitambala therein to commit a felony.
Mr Njovu said that the land in question was in the process of being repossessed by the council and on the same area two plots were under the title of Dr Chitambala.
He said when the Council received summon from the court they investigated the matter at the ministry of land and about 3 plots were on title of the complaint.
Mr Njovu said since the complaint had started to claim more than the two plots that the council was aware of so they decided to engage him.
He said that the council engage him because they had doubt whether the complaint was able to develop five portions if he failed to develop the two.
The Legal Officer also said if they were settlers giving plots on the land then it was illegal as the land in question was in the process of being repossessed and there is pending court case.
During cross examination Asufu Banda one of the accused asked Mr Njobu to read through the minute number that was passed in 2017 by the Council to resettle them to another area but he replied that council follows procedure.
The matter which is before Magistrate Stephen Mabona has been adjourned to October 19, for ruling.
The rest are on bail save for Asafu Banda who is in custody.