Lusaka ~ Tue, 20 Jul 2021
By Brightwell Chabusha
In a turn of events, the Lusaka High Court has acquitted four Twin Palm Secondary School pupils of the alleged murder of Ryan Phiri (in picture).
Ryan, 17, who was a grade 12 pupil at Kabulonga Boys’ Secondary School, was allegedly beaten to death by pupils from Twin Palm Secondary School on December 4 last year.
However, Elvis Nsokolo, 19 and three juveniles, have been acquitted by judge Sharon Newa because there is no evidence linking them to the murder of Ryan.
She said there was no evidence linking Nsokolo to the offence while his co-accused were not mentioned apart from evidence from the police.
And judge Newa dismissed evidence from Ryan’s parents that he mentioned to them when they visited him at the University Teaching Hospital (UTH) that Elvis was among the pupils that beat him up.
The judge said it was not true that Ryan spoke to his parents because he was unconscious.
During hearing of the case, Ryan’s parents narrated how they visited him at UTH and he claimed that Elvis was one of the persons that beat him.
However, Elvis in his defence, denied beating Ryan in the fracas which led to his death.
He testified that there was confusion between the two rival schools in Malata area.
Elvis had narrated that there were about 60 pupils from Twin Palm Secondary School and about 30 pupils from Kabulonga secondary school.
He said that during the confusion, someone punched him and he punched him back.
The court heard that there was a lot of confusion among the two rival groups but he did not witness any fight.
Elvis said pupils from Kabulonga realised that they were being overpowered and they ran away while he also went home.
Later, he heard about Ryan’s death.