A 46-YEAR-OLD woman of Chipata district has been arrested by police for allegedly faking the death of her husband so that she could get his life insurance savings from Madison Insurance Company. Petronela Chongwe allegedly faked the death of her husband, a soldier at Gonda Barracks who is out of the country for peacekeeping in Central African Republic.
Eastern Province Commissioner of Police Lackson Sakala said the suspect works as a registry clerk at the Ministry of Works and Supply in Chipata. Mr Sakala said Chongwe was arrested last week as she allegedly presented copies of death and burial certificates for her husband to Madison Insurance Company so that she could claim his savings. He said in an interview yesterday that officials at Madison Insurance Company got suspicious of Chongwe because this was the second time she was making a claim on behalf of another person.
“We have a wife of a soldier in custody for forging death and burial certificates of her husband who is on national duty in Central African Republic under the United Nations peacekeeping mission,” Mr Sakala said. He said police are investigating a medical doctor in Katete who helped Chongwe to obtain death and burial certificates for her husband, who is still alive.
Last year, Chongwe allegedly obtained K10,000 from the same insurance company after faking the death of her aunt, who was battling for her life in hospital for a long time. Mr Sakala said Chongwe was paid the money while her aunt was still admitted to Chipata Central Hospital in November last year.
He said the insurance company just established that Chongwe was actually paid her aunt’s life insurance savings while she was still alive. Mr Sakala named Chongwe’s aunt as Fenalad Njobvu, 86, who only died towards the end of December last year, way after the claim was processed in early September. He said in the latest case involving her husband’s life savings, Chongwe will be charged with attempting to obtain money by false pretences.
In the case regarding her aunt’s life insurance savings, she is facing three counts of forgery, uttering false documents and obtaining money by false pretences. Mr Sakala said the suspect has been granted police bond but that none of her family members or colleagues are willing to be her