Chanthunya can be extradited to Malawi, rules South Africa court

A South African court has supported the extradition of Malawian murder suspect, Misozi Chanthunya, but has given him a right to appeal.

Malawi judicial officers asked South African government to repatriate Chanthunya to Malawi so that he can answer murder charges.

Solicitor General, Anthony Kamanga, confirmed the Rustenburg court ruled that Chanthunya’s extradition was legal and should be enforced.

However, Kamanga said Chanthunya “has appealed against the ruling.”

Chanthunya: Faces extradition (Insert Linda Gasa)

The Solicitor General said Chanthunya will meanwhile, remain in South Africa holding centre,  until the appeal case is heard.

In his appeal, Chanthunya fears he will not have a fair trial and that if convicted he will be executed, which will deprive him his right to life.

But convicts on murder and homicide cases are not given death penalty in Malawi.

The High Court declared the death sentences on all prisoners on death row unconstitutional. In a landmark judgment, the High Court ruled that the automatic nature of the death penalty in Malawi for murder and other offences violated the right to life and amounted to inhuman punishment as it did not provide the individuals concerned with an opportunity to mitigate their death sentences.

The fugitive Malawian business tycoon was arrested on January 23 this year by International Police (Interpol) in Rustenburg, South Africa where he had been hiding after being on the run for about a year.

Chanthunya is accused of gruesomely killing his pregnant Zimbabwean girlfriend, Linda Gasa, in September 2010.

Late Gasa, a student at the Malawi College of Accountancy, was found entombed in Chanthunya’s private cottage at Monkey Bay, Mangochi where it is reported that the two went to discuss the pregnancy issue which Chanthunya wanted her to abort but Gasa declined.

Since his mysterious ‘escape’ in Malawi, Chanthunya had been reportedly co-habiting with a Malawian woman in South Africa until his arrest.

His mate, 22-year-old Ria Evans, was also arrested late January and repatriated to Malawi.

At some point, Chanthunya’s escape was linked to former President Bingu wa Mutharika’s daughter, Duwa, who was accused of having played a hand for his fleeing.

Before Chanthunya’s arrest there were several claims of his sightings in as far afield as Cuba, the United States of America and Zambia.

Chanthunya was married to Prudence Leboa, a South African business lady with whom he had two children. But she closed her several businesses before returning to her country immediately after her husband bolted.

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