Lawyer and former Minister of Justice Ralph Kasambara SC on Wednesday lost his cool in court and his emotions unfolded after Director of Public Prosecution (DPP) Mary Kachale objected to his questioning line to fifth witness, Keaton Gani.
Kasambala , businessman Pika Manondo and Macdonald Kumwembe are answering attempted murder and conspiracy to commit murders on former Budget Director Paul Mphwiyo.
During cross examination, Kasambara had wanted to establish a fact that on 13th September 2013 he went to Kamuzu International Airport to welcome former South African president Thabo Mbeki and on 14th September he went to Livingstonia Beach in Salima.
Kasambara: In your testimony, you said we went together to Salima on 14 September with Mr Mbeki?
Kasambara: Are you aware that a day before I went to the airport to welcome Mbeki during my tour of duty as Minister if Justice?
Then Kachale stood on raise an onbjection, accusing Kasambara of misleading the witness.
“Objection my Lord, the questioning line is misleading the witness to say two statements,” said Kachale.
After presiding Judge Michael Ntambo asked Kasambara on his question tactics, he explained that all he wanted was to ask if Gani, his bodyguard when he was minister, was with him at the airport.
“Misleading,” emphasised Kachale.
Kasambara then unleashed his anger : “With due respect Madam please don’t let me lose my temper, let the court decide on this one.”
Before Ntambo made his determination, Kasambara asked for five minutes adjournment.
“Thirty seconds it’s enough,” ruled Ntambo.
Mphwiyo’s shooting on 13 September 2013 led to the unravelling of the systematic looting of millions of government money dubbed ‘cashgate’.
He is on record telling the court that Brown Mpinganjira, a senior government official in the former Joyce Banda administration, warned him that Kasambara and another former ruling People’s Party (PP) official Hophmally Makande, had given him “ten days to live” unless he honoured certain government payments.
Makande is not on trial for the case but testified that he had nothing to do with government payments.
Mpinganjira is yet to testify.
Mphwiyo had two bullets hit him in the mandible and another went through his shoulder to his chest. One bullet was removed in a South African hospital but two others – lodged in his spinal column – will remain inside the 39-year-old for the rest of his life.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :