Former presidential legal advisor Allan Ntata says he is “too busy” to come to Malawi and join the dozen people charged with treason over an alleged coup plot in the aftermath of the death of former Malawi president Bingu wa Mutharika.
Ntata currently in the United Kingdom where he went after the death of Mutharika was mentioned in court when the 11 were formally charged, bringing to 12 the number of those accused of trying to prevent Malawi’s vice president Joyce Banda from becoming president after the president’s death last April.
Late president’s brother, Peter Mutharika, interdicted State Chief Secretart Bright Msaka and former minister Goodall Gondwe had suggested to Army Commander Gen. Henry Odillo that the army “just take over”. But Odillo told the official Commission of Inquiry that “he was uncomfortable with the suggestion for it was not provided for in the Constitution”
Spokesperson for State prosecutors Apoche Itimu has disclosed the the trial will start on April 4.
But Ntata said he will not be availing himself for the trial, saying the charges are politically motivated.
“These charges are useless. Waste of tax payer’s money and waste of time,” said Ntata.
“This is just political. I can’t stop what I am doing here, something which I consider to be more important and come to Malawi to answer to useless charges,” said Ntata from his base in the United Kingdom.
According to Ntata, he is studying for a doctorate in law and also lecturing at a university.
Ntata, 39, said he is not a fugitive but that he would not leave whatever he is doing to face what he calls political vendetta.
“I don’t have any fear. There is no merit to this nonsense,” he said of the treason charges.
“I have much more important things to address. This is not treason charge. This is political charge,” said Ntata, who left Malawi for the UK even before late Mutharika was buried.
Ntata, who has just published a book entitled: “Trappings of Power: Political Leadership in Africa” which analyses the Mutharika presidency, faulted the way the Banda administration has reacted to the findings of the Bingu death inquiry report.
“In my view, the treason case against opposition leaders in Malawi is Joyce Banda’s desperate attempt to divert people’s attention from her loss of focus and direction and her failure to respond effectively to the economic suffering she has brought upon Malawians because of her ill-advised policies,” argues Ntata.
He adds: “These arrests demonstrate that in Africa, old political tricks of simply silencing your political opponents are still alive and well.”
Others in the case include former miniters Symon Vuwa Kaunda, Patricia Kaliati, Henry Mussa; former deputy ministers Nicholas Dausi and Kondwani Nankhumwa, Msaka’s deputy Necton Mhura and Mutharika’s guard commander Duncan Mwapasa.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :