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Monday, July 26, 2021

Tasila Tembo’s alleged killer had mental disorder at time he committed the offense

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Tasila Tembo’s alleged killer, Zambia Army officer, Lieutenant Nigel Mwaba had a mental disorder at a time he committed the offence, a mental assessment report has revealed.
Consultant psychiatrist from Chinama hospital, Dr Patrick Msoni said the personality disorder was further precipitated by imminent loss.

Dr Msoni however, said that Mwaba is fit to make a plea, stand trial and follow the proceedings in court.

Facts of the offence are that between October 24 and 26, last year in Lusaka, Mwaba, 33, did murder Dr Tembo, alleged to be his lover.

Mwaba’s lawyers on February 1 applied that the accused under go a mental check up at Chinama Hospital condition or conditions of disruptive, impulse-control and conduct disorder. This is a disorder that can cause a person to behave angrily or aggressively toward people or property.

“On the basis of the above information, observations and findings Nigel Musonda Mwaba has Borderline Personality Disorder characterised by unstable interpersonal relationships, variable moods and impulsivity. He may have been predisposed to the disorder by environmental factors and the disorder maintained by his drinking repertoire. At the time of the alleged offence of the act may have been precipitated by an emotional decompensation consequent upon an imminent loss,” said Dr Msoni.

“It is my opinion that he had the above disorder at the time of the alleged offence. His cognitive (thinking) process is normal and has no perceptual disorders. He has insight,” he concluded.

Judge Wilfred Muma read the report when the matter came up for commencement of trial. Mr Justice Muma then ordered for Mwaba to take a fresh plea and he again denied killing Dr Tembo.
The matter could not however proceed to trial because Mwaba’s lawyers from the Legal Aid Board were not ready and applied for an adjournment.

“ We are unable to proceed owing to the fact that we were served with four new witness statements on Friday and considering that there was a weekend in between, we were unable to confer with the accused in order to get instructions,” Dr O’ Brien Kaaba told the court.
Dr Kaaba in accordance with the law, said the State was supposed to serve the witness statements 14 clear days before the date of trial.

He said the new evidence served on them will have an impact on what the defence team has already prepared therefore the 14 days should apply.

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