Matero MP denies defaming Mayor Miles Sampa

By Staff Reporter

MATERO PF member of parlianment Lloyd Kaziya has told  the Lusaka High Court that he did not defame mayor Miles Sampa but was merely expressing his opinion.

Sampa sued Kaziya in February this year over a story that was published in the New Vision Newspaper headlined; “Sampa Linked”

Sampa is claiming damages for libel defamation of character.

The plaintiff claimed that Kaziya caused to be published the defamatory words on December 28, 2018.

Kaziya in the article complained of and alleged  that; “The lease under Sampa has not contributed much to the well being of the people of Matero as the rental payments coming from the rented structures within the stadium only benefit the mayor.”

Kaziya, however, did not enter an appearance and defence in the matter, explaining that he thought Sampa would withdraw the suit after PF senior officials mediated.

The court entered a default judgement and ordered Kaziya to pay Sampa damages for defamation.

Meanwhile, Kaziya has asked the court to stay execution of the judgment passed in Sampa’s favour and also set it aside.

Kaziya stated that he had a valid defence to the claims and wants to dispute the said claims by Sampa.

He explained that he was merely expressing his opinion as member of parliament for Matero constituency and had been advised by his lawyers that opinions were not defamatory.

“I have a valid defence to the said claims and would like to dispute the claims upon which the judgement was entered. I deny making any statement that ridiculed or disgraced the plaintiff in any way to the media. I am advised that I have an absolute right to express my opinion and that opinions are not defamatory. I am advised that there are several authorities in the Supreme Court to defend my action and can not be denied to be heard,” Kaziya submitted.

Kaziya stated that  such delay to file defence and enter appearance was not due to disregard to the rules of court nor any disrespect to the court time frames but rather events beyond  his control.

Sampa stated that the alleged words were defamatory in their natural meaning.

He stated that the New Vision Newspaper has wide readership in Zambia and was accessible to millions of readers on the internet.

Sampa claimed  that the words were understood to mean that he was guilty of serious offences of abuse of office and corruption.