Court throws out questionable defamation case

Written by on June 6, 2019



THE Lusaka Boma Local Court has thrown out defamatory suit in which a woman of Kamwala South sued her workmate’s wife

for calling her a prostitute.

Erica Chipeta, 26, told Senior Local Court Magistrate Gastone Kalala that she works with Ms Chisanga Chileshe’s husband at the Civic Center where he is a plumber and she is a cleaner.

“I’ve worked with her husband for a long time even before he married her. She started calling me last year to insult me. She accuses me of having a relationship with her husband but on several occasions I have refused,” Chipeta said.

She said she was forced to stop communicating with Ms Chileshe’s husband even on work issues because of the accusations. 

“She posted my picture on ‘zed hule’ on Facebook and wrote ‘Erica stop going out with my husband’. I’m married with 4 children and my husband even chased me from home because of the same post because she ruined my name,” Chipeta said.

She told the court that she pleaded with Ms Chileshe to take down the picture but she refused and told her she wanted her husband (Ms Chipeta’s husband) to see the post as well.

“She later came to my place with her relatives to apologize but even though she has apologized, my marriage has already been disturbed because she tarnished my name on social media,” Chipeta said.

In defence Chileshe told the court that last year in May, her husband started telling her  that Chipeta kept calling him.

“My husband used to stay with her before we got married. They were supposed to get married but she had another man who had not divorced her. Last year when I miscarried, my husband called me barren and many times he would say ‘Erica ndiye mkazi wanga’,” Chileshe said.

She said Chipeta often called her husband and one time she herself handed him the phone when she phoned him.

The court found that the key witness, Ms Chileshe’s husband, was absent.

It also found that there was an inappropriate relationship between Chipeta and Chileshe’s husband.

Application for defamation of character was ruled out because the claim lacked merit.

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