Bushiris win round one in preliminary extradition hearing

Lilongwe Chief Resident Magistrate Madalitso Chimwaza has dismissed preliminary objections on the State’s application to move the matter to the High Court to make an order that the witnesses in the extradition case testify in South Africa.

The court has however, given the State and lawyers representing Bushiri 14 days to file their submissions so the Court can make its own determination on how the witnesses in the extradition case should tender their evidence.

Bushiri in round one win

The State want witnesses testify in South African courts while the Bushiris want them to testify in the Malawi court physically.

In her ruling, Chimwaza has guided that the need for having witnesses heard through video conferencing will be determined by her court if necessary.

An earlier argument by the state was that the witnesses should not travel from South Africa to Malawi due to logistical challenges and Covid-19.

Lawyer for the Bushiris, Wapona Kita, however worries that the matter is moving backwards with the view that it has been taken up by a new magistrate.

With the current ruling, an application by the state to have the matter reviewed by High Court has fallen off, and objections by the defense have similarly been dismissed.

The Bushiris are expected to return to court on 5 August, 2022.

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