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Ugandan held in Zambia over plot to kill Chinese

What you need to know:

  • Henry Kwotek, aka Kwoteck is reportedly one of the foreign hitmen hired by a Chinese national for a mission to snuff out a victim inside Zambia.

A Ugandan arrested as part of a transnational assassination team which allegedly targeted to eliminate a Chinese national in Zambia, has been living a flashy lifestyle and left digital footprints, including about his fateful travel from South Africa to Lusaka.

Zambian police interrogators hope to use the trail of information that 40-year-old Henry Kwotek, aka Kwoteck, posted on his social media pages to connect vital clues in their inquiries into the alleged hire of foreign hitmen by a Chinese national for a mission to snuff out a victim inside the country.

The investigations relate to a reported failed March 2 assassination of a Chinese national in Chingola, who was shot in the chest three times some 447 kilometres northeast of Lusaka, but survived.
Following days of investigations, detectives, according to Zambia Police Service spokesperson Rae Hamoonga, zeroed in and arrested the three alleged foreign hit squad members, who reportedly confessed and identified the two Chinese nationals, who reportedly hired them at ZK200,000 (Shs40m).

“The five suspects namely: M/Henry Kwotek, aged 40, of [address] 44 Ponana street in Gauteng of South Africa; M/Chen Moyn, aged 42, of China Club Hotel in Lusaka; M/Lucky Singate aged 32 of 30 Ngcola Kwanobuale, South Africa, M/Mawande Lungelo Qnoqnoza of 41 Mqolomba in South Africa; and, M/Zhuang Pingzen, aged 47, have been jointly charged [with] attempted murder, while Henry Kwoteck has further been charged [with] two offences of [being] found in possession of prohibited article and making a false document,” Mr Hamoonga noted in a statement issued yesterday.

He added: “As Zambia police, we will not relent in dealing with such criminal elements as we stand ready to ensure they face the full wrath of the law.”
Zambian media reported that Zhang Lian, 45, was attacked on March 2, at around 8.30pm local time at Lian-an Mining Limited, a mining operation that he owns.
Working with sources in Zambia and South Africa, Daily Monitor has been able to piece together Mr Kwotek’s journey from South Africa to Zambia and how he ended up on the wrong side of the law.

There are at least six Facebook accounts under the name Henry Kwotek, and bear similar photos of himself and his family.
According to information gleaned from different sources, Kwotek, who describes himself as a “financial heavyweight champion”, spends time in Lusaka, Zambia, and Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape, and Centurion Gauteng — all in South Africa. 
Photos of his wife and four daughters are splashed all over the Facebook pages.

The Zambian police registered the 40-year-old as a Ugandan living on 44 Ponana Street in Gauteng Province of South Africa. According to law enforcement agencies, the accused has a family in South Africa, but he had moved to Zambia with others early this year allegedly to conduct robberies, some targeting Chinese nationals.
The 40-year-old claims to have studied a Bachelor of Business Administration degree at Makerere University, Uganda’s pioneer and largest public university.
In his resumé, he further notes that he studied International Business at Makerere University and took classes at St John’s College, an elite private boys-only school in Johannesburg, South Africa.

We were unable to find details confirming his study history.
In 2018, Mr Kwotek marketed himself on Facebook as a used phone and laptop dealer based in Johannesburg, and provided a WhatsApp number for clients to reach him for business.

Our attempt to send a message to the telephone contact showed it was not activated on the social media platform.
In May 2018, Kwotek claimed to be travelling to Shanghai, China, but his subsequent posts on Facebook showed that he remained in South Africa.
Journey to Zambia

On March 20, Kwotek posted a video of bundles of Kwacha, Zambian currency notes, in a bathroom with a background voice repeatedly saying “…money in the bank…”
In images and messages posted on his microblogging sites, he portrays an opulent life in which he describes himself as a “gangster”. The posts do not reveal his livelihood.
His journey from South Africa through Zimbabwe is detailed on his social media. It started sometime on February 18. 

On February 19, he was at Musina Zimbabwe Border gate, he then proceeded to Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe before settling at Roysam Lodge, Livingstone in Zambia.
On February 20, he posted photos with four other men captioned “2022 Zambia”. On February 22, he posted that he was attending a meeting in Lusaka, Zambia. 
A day later, he celebrated his 40th birthday at the Basket Pub Nkana East located in Kitwe, Zambia. He continued posting pictures, mostly alone, in the following days, including one at Club Ebony Parklands in Kitwe.

On March 4, he posted a photo of a brand-new BMW car and indicated he was flying from the Zambia capital, Lusaka, to Port Elizabeth in South Africa’s Eastern Cape, where he is believed to have his family. 
It is not clear if he left Zambia that day. However, the last — and still the latest information as of yesterday — was that Zambian police arrested him, alongside other alleged accomplices, against whom charges of attempted murder have been preferred.

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