Malawi former president Joyce Banda has asked High Court in Zomba to withdraw her intention to join the of cashgate suspect Osward Lutepo’s money laundering case as an interested party.
Banda made application after obtaining an injunction preventing the release of her call logs to main suspect in the cashgate scandal and business tycoon Lutepo who is answering money laundering charges and possession of stolen property charges.
Lawyer for Banda, Mauya Msuku argued that producing the former head of state’s call logs “will be intruding in her privacy.”
On September 4, the Zomba High court had granted Lutepo access to Banda‘s and former Budget Director Paul Mphwiyo’s call logs from telephone operators.
But Banda, founder and President of the People’s Party (PP), through her lawyer Msuku argued that obtaining call logs]would have infringed on the privacy of the former president.
He said Lutepo asked for Banda’s call logs uninterrupted from January 1 to December 31 2013.
“This is not in order because some of the calls might have been to her family members and friends,” said Msuku.
Lutepo’s lawyer Oswald Tupelo pointed out that although Lutepo asked for all the call logs, only those relevant to his case would be used.
Meanwhile, Msuku lodged a request to court to withdraw Banda from the case.
Apart from money laundering charges, Lutepo is also answering perjury charges and was recently arrested on charges of the attempted murder of Mphwiyo that took place on September 13 last year.
Former justice minister Ralph Kasambara who is also answering to money laundering charges and also an attempted murder of Mphwiyo criticised Banda’s decision to join the case as inappropriate.
Lutepo, who handed himself to police on November 6 2013, has been a hostile an unreliable witness, changing statements now and again. He is on a K50 million bail bond and he is also allegedly connected to the attempted murder of Mphwiyo and Director of Public Prosecutions Mary Kachale said he would be charged with conspiracy to commit murder.
The state earlier indicated that they will parade 14 witnesses, 3 investigators and 11 civilians.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :