A well known Zambia’s photographer Cornelius Mulenga popularly known as Chellah Tukuta has been imprisoned for two year over defamation charges he was answering.
Chellah Tukuta, posted a video on his official Facebook page on May 20, 2020, accusing former Information and Broadcasting Services minister Dora Siliya of being a pimp who sells girls to high profile men for sex.
“This Dora Siliya is hooking up girls, selling girls to the high profile people, so that men can be sleeping [with them], she is actually the highest of the highest professional prostitute. If Dora Siliya is refusing these allegations that she does not connect girls to high profile people for sex, let her come‚ÄĚ. Chellah Tukuta said.
Magistrate Mwale who was presiding over the case said that any person who exposes another person to contempt, ridicule and contempt was liable to defamation.
The Magistrate then added that Tukuta’s publication was wrongfully published and meant to defame Siliya.
“I find the statement by the accused that Siliya sells girls to high profile and is the highest of the highest professional prostitutes extremely careless and calculated to injure Siliya’s reputation.” he said.
Magistrate Mwale said the fact that she had been in failed relationship does not make her a professional prostitute.
Tukuta’s lawyer Meamande Wamukwamba from Linda Kasonde’s law firm asked the court to exercise maximum leniency.
But magistrate Mwale said he was deeply concerned that there are people who are in the habit of seriously defaming others.
He said he would met out punishment which would deter other would-be offenders and sentenced Tukuta to 24 months with effect from today.
He pleaded not guilty and the matter proceeded to trial where Siliya testified that: “I may be single, I may have failed relationships, I may be divorced but that does not make me a high level prostitute.”
She said even if she is single, being in failed relationship or divorced does not mean she sells human beings for sex.
When found with a case to answer and placed on defence, Tukuta opted to remain silent and did not call witnesses.
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