Minister of Education George Chaponda who was instrumental in the formulation of the ‘quota system’ in public universities which annoyed the northern region is reported to be on another crusade to fight judicial officers from the north.
According to published report, former Attorney General Ralph Kasambara accused Chaponda before High Court judge Geoffrey Mwase of using businessman Ramesh Patel in his crackdown against judicial officers from the northern region.
“[George] Chaponda used you [Ramesh Patel] to punish [Mzondi] Mvula because he has grudges against magistrates and judges from the north,” said Kasambara when cross-examining Patel during proceedings of a case in which interdicted magistrate Mzondi Mvula, football agent Kondi Msungama and former deputy minister Rashid Gaffar are answering six counts on allegations of soliciting a K5 million bribe from Patel.
According to Daily Times report Kasambara revealed that Patel is in good books with ruling party politicians as evident in contractual works at President Bingu wa Mutharika’s Ndata Farm in Thyolo. He admitted discussing the matter with Chaponda.
Patel testified for the state that he received a call from Gaffar informing him that there was a warrant of arrest for him whose hard copy was not available.
He said Gaffar, who was his friend and client, offered to help him out by referring him to Msungama who took Patel to Mvula’s office.
“He [Mvula] asked me how much money I was willing to give in order for the file [containing the warrant of arrest] to disappear… and I said I could raise K500,000.
“Mvula looked at me, laughed and said he wanted ten times that amount [K5 million]… but we finally settled for K3 million,” Patel told the court according to the daily.
He said he was given an ultimatum of about a week to pay the money.
Patel said after consulting his father on the matter, he was warned that he was enganging in corrupt practises and he reported to the ACB.
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