The Kasama magistrate court has sentenced two employees of Radio Mano community station to 18 months imprisonment with hard labour for forgery and altering false documents.
Magistrate Dominic Makalicha convicted suspended Radio Mano Executive Director David Chanda and his programmes manager Henry Njenje Lupiya, on five counts of forgery, altering false documents and theft by servant.
In the first count, Chanda and Lupiya, on unknown dates but between January 1, 2005 and August 31, 2007 jointly and whilst acting together with unknown people, forged minutes of a board meeting for the Radio Mano which they presented to Cavmont Capital Bank with intention of opening an illegal bank account.
In the second count, the duo did alter a false document namely minutes of a board meeting for the radio station to Cavmont Bank for the opening of an account with full knowledge that the said minutes were false.
In the third, fourth and fifth counts, Chanda and Lupiya on unknown dates but between April 4th, 2006 and July 10th, 2007, allegedly stole money belonging to the community radio station amounting to K12, 250, 000 contrary to the law.
The accused persons, who were both on bail, had denied all charges but were found guilt by he court after trial.
In passing judgment yesterday, Magistrate Makalicha said the prosecution team had proved beyond reasonable doubt that Chanda and Lupiya were guilty of forgery and uttering false documents, contrary to the law. He convicted them accordingly.
Magistrate Makalicha said he had taken into consideration the mitigation by the convicts but noted that the offences committed were serious and as such the duo deserved stiffer punishment to deter would be offenders.
He jailed Lupiya and Chanda to one year six months on each of the two counts and said the sentences would run concurrently with effect from yesterday.
Magistrate Makalicha however, acquitted Chanda and Lupiya on counts of theft by public servant due to insufficient evidence to warrant their conviction.
He further advised people holding public offices to execute their duties diligently and desist from abusing their authority for their selfish gains.
In mitigation, Lupiya and Chanda both asked for leniency from the court saying they were first offenders and were looking after their families, who would suffer if they were sent to prison.
Meanwhile, there was drama outside the magistrate court yesterday when relatives to Lupiya and Chanda cried uncontrollably.