A 35-YEAR-OLD woman of Kitwe has been sentenced to three years simple imprisonment by a magistrate’s court for forging a grade 12 certificate and securing employment at Kalulushi Municipal Council (KMC).
Appearing before senior resident magistrate Daniel Musonda, was Lillian Wikishale of no fixed abode.
Wikishale was facing charges of making false documents, uttering and obtaining money by false pretence.
In count one, Wikishale on a date unknown but in 2012, without lawful authority or excuse, did make a grade 12 school certificate number 995020006 in the name of Lillian Wikishale.
In count two, it is alleged that on July 24, 2012, knowingly and fraudulently, uttered the false grade 12 school certificate to KMC.
In count three, Wikishale between July 24, 2012 and August 1, 2014 with intent to defraud did obtain K23,524.57 cash from KMC by falsely pretending that she was a grade 12 certificate-holder when in fact not.
In mitigation, the convict prayed before the court to exercise leniency on her, saying she was a first offender who was remorseful for her actions.
“Your honour, I am a single mother of two children and if I’m sent to prison they will suffer. I have learnt a lesson and I promise to become a teacher to would-be offenders,” she said.
Passing judgment, Magistrate Musonda said the evidence was plain that the document was forged and that the convict knew that it was forged.
“I have noted that you are a first offender who is sorry for your actions and that you have promised to be an ambassador to others. But I’m sure while in prison, you will be able to achieve your wish of getting a grade 12 certificate as there is provision for you to start learning.
“In count one and two, I sentence you to 24 months simple imprisonment, and in count three, 12 months. The sentences in count one and two will run at the same time, meaning you will serve 36 months in prison with effect from today,” Mr Musonda said.
During trial, the court heard that Wikishale was in the company of her friends when she sought employment from the municipality.
The court heard that she responded to an advert where KMC was looking for a council officer and the qualification for the job was a grade 12 school certificate.
The convict did not have a certificate, but in desperation for the job, forged the document with the help of a friend and eventually got employed.
Whilst in employment, Wikishale was paid a total K23,524.57, but it was later discovered that her school document was forged.
The matter was reported to the police after which she was charged and arrested.