Attorney General Kaphale recuses from Chilumpha treason case

The Malawi’s new Attorney General, Kalekeni Kaphale, who was lead defence lawyer in the treason case involving former president Dr Cassim Chilumpha and business man Yusuf Matumula has recused himself from taking part in the case.

Chilumpha: Charges till hanging on his head
Chilumpha: Charges till hanging on his head

He says his office will only play an advisory role in the case.

Kaphale: I will play no active role in the case
Kaphale: I will play no active role in the case

Chilumpha and Matumula were arrested in 2006 on allegation that they were planning to assassinate the former president the late Bingu wa Mutharika using hired assassins from south Africa.

The case has dragged on for years although the government says it had strong evidence against the accused.

Kaphale told a local radio Capital FM that it would be legally wrong for him to lay hands on the case because he has assumes the office of the Attoney General.

The country’s top lawyer said the office of Director of Public Prosecution (DPP) will competently continue with the case since it’s an independence office.

“Now that I have crossed over the case to the (DPP) I cannot get involved in that case at all,” said Kaphale.

“And there are a lot of other offices that can handle that case like that of the Solicitor General all of whom are highly experienced and highly rated law officers,” he added.

Chilumpha has been dealt a severe blow in his treason case with the withdrawals from his legal team comprising Viva Nyimba, Kalekeni Kaphale and Fahad Assani.

Assani, who had been a front man in defending Chilumpha since his arrest, was the first to withdraw from the case in 2012 due to political reasons.

However, the Malawi’s top prosecutor Bruno Kalemba said two years ago that discussions were in “top gear” to drop the case which has stalled for years.

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