CLOSE friends to Valerie Franco, a woman brutally killed by her husband have revealed that the couple’s tragic dispute arose after she confronted him for hiding his HIV positive status and serial womanizing.

They have however disclosed that there had been a relationship between justice minister Mulambo Haimbe and Valerie, but that it ended three years ago, contradicting rumours suggesting the relationship caused Valerie’s husband, Mike Ilishebo to strangle and stab her to death in the matrimonial home.

One friend shared, “What I know as her friend from way back is that after the death of her (Valerie’s) first husband, she took time before she started dating anyone seriously.”

The friend explained that Valerie and Haimbe began their relationship in 2018 but things soured in late 2020 and throughout 2021, leading to their eventual breakup.

“Valerie and Mike (late husband) got involved around Nov/Dec 2022 and quickly got married in March 2023. By then she was already pregnant. No wonder the baby is eight months old in a one year marriage.”

They further told Kalemba that Valerie other relationships before marrying her late husband, Ilishebo, in March 2023.

It was revealed that from the start of their marriage, the couple faced challenges, with reports of infidelity and abuse.

“Problems started from the word go. She found out he had many girlfriends and he started sleeping out. He would beat her (yes beating a pregnant woman) when she challenged his behaviour to the extent that she reported him for assault at least twice, but each time they would reconcile,” the sources revealed.

Sources told Kalemba that Valerie even reported her husband for assault multiple times, but they often reconciled.

The situation escalated, particularly after Valerie discovered her husband was hiding his HIV status and confronted him about it.

According to the late Valerie’s friends, they believe the latest fight was brewing from the time she got back with him after a time on separation.

They reconciled in March but tensions remained high leading to the couple’s death.

“She confided in me that she had learned that her husband had lost his job at Zanaco and that he had been hiding his HIV status from her and she had decided to confront him.”

“It seems a lot of issues came up resulting in a violent fight and these tragic deaths.”.

CREDIT: Kalemba


  1. Honourable, just go get tested. Take your wife and your other side chicks with you so they know their status as well.

    Marriage breakers will never see heaven. You see the pain and embarrassment you have caused your wife, children and family.

    Stay away from married women.

    • I think it is clear that Haimbe and Velerie discontinued their relationship way before she got married to her late husband. So it does not look good to blame someone as a marriage breaker when the story is clear.

  2. Why do some people like poking their noses in private matters which don’t concern them? Few months ago it was Hon. Cornelius Mweetwa and today it’s Hon Mulambo Haimbe. We’re those women only targeting Ministers? But such stories or allegations are not new to Zambians, even under PF, we had such stories, those who have a good memory like mine still remember the story of Ruth Mbandu murder allegations and yet the big mouthed Mwamba never called for anyone to resign and the accused person never resigned. Why is he now without shame calling for Hon Mulambo Haimbe’s resignation before any investigations? What evidence has he got? Is he now an investigative agent? Moreover, Technology is now advanced and one can doctor and manipulate a video in anyway he wants. So nothing should be taken for granted.

  3. There was nothing wrong in this conversation. Ilishebo was MARRIED TO A WIDOW. He was too young to get married to the Widow THAT WAS THE WORST DECISIONS EVER. A DIVORCEE AND WINDOW DON’T TOUCH unless if you were also widowed.


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