A key Zambian opposition figure has denied claims that he has been training party supporters to form an illegal militia ahead of elections due in August.
Geoffrey Mwamba, vice-president of Zambia’s United Party for National Development (UPND) was arrested on March 3 and appeared in court on Thursday together with 21 other party members alleged to have been undergoing militia training.
#Zambia's opposition leader Hakainde Hichilema pleads not guilty to charges of inciting violence after the murder of a ruling party official— BBC Africa (@BBCAfrica) February 27, 2013
“My lady, I deny the charge,” Mwamba told the magistrate after being asked to plead. The trial is due to start on May 3.
My lady, I deny the charge.
Mwamba was last week arrested on separate charges of inciting violence against President Edgar Lungu, after threatening to “go for his throat”, VOA reports.
There are reports that political tension is mounting in the southern African nation ahead of presidential, parliamentary and local elections on August 11. Analysts say Lungu faces a serious challenge from UPND leader Hakainde Hichilema.