The treason case against former vice president Dr Cassim Chilumpha and businessman Yusuf Billiat Matumula is still on and government continue to spend tax payers in millions to pay a British lawyer the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) administration hired and state witnesses.
Chilumpha and Matumula were arrested in 2006 on allegations that they were planning to assassinate former president, the late Bingu wa Mutharika, using hired assassins from South Africa.
The case has dragged on for nine years although government then said it had overwhelming evidence against the two.
Malawi Government has since blown at least K200 million (US$487 804) of public tax to pay a British lawyer Antony Berry and Malawians are continuing to pay legal fees and other claims
Berry is the Queen’s Counsel (QC) in the UK. He is leading a prosecution team comprising seasoned lawyers Patrice Nkhono and Pacharo Kayira.
The money spent on the lawyer is enough to buy over 100 ventilators which are in short supply in the country’s main hospitals. Ventilators are used to assist patients with breathing problems.
The former Director of Public Prosecution Bruno Kalemba hinted during the Joyce Banda- era that the case would be discontinued but it was only warehoused and charges were not dropped or the accused were not acquitted.
The country’s new top prosecutor, Mary Kachale, has not has expressed interest to discontinue the case, which was largely viewed as one of the politically motivated cases the DPP hatched.
The matter was adjourned to a date to be fixed.
Chilumpha and the late Mutharika fell out in 2005 after the former president left United Democratic Front (UDF), a party that sponsored him into power in 2004, to form DPP. Chilumpha remained in UDF until he joined People’s Party (PP) in 2012 and later dumped it.
Key State witness in the case are 45-year-old Thomas Elias Ndlovu and Graham Minaar an intelligence expert were paid money from government to implicate Chilumpha.
Ndlovu, who runs a security firm in South Africa, is on record testifying at the High Court that he was given R800, 000 for him and his family to relocate from his normal Johannesburg base in South Africa as part of government’s witness protection procedure.
Chilumpha, who has served as Member of Parliament for Nkhotakota South for close to 20 years now, is seen as a man who leads a quiet and isolated life.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :