Controversial hip-hop artist Mwiza Chavura who was arrested last Friday by Blantyre Police when he handed himself in relation to the song he released titled Ndidzakupanga rape will spend more days in the cooler until court rules on Thursday his bail bid.
The hip-hop musician, who has come under fire over lyrics of his controversial song about rape, has been charged with producing obscene materials, which is contrary to Section 179 (1) (a) of the Penal Code.
His four pro bono lawyers lodged a bail bid before Lilongwe Chief Resident Magistrate Violet Chipawo forarguing that the offense is minor.
But Police Prosecutor, Cecilia Zangazanga, asked the court not to release the artists, to pave way for further investigations.
Senior superintendent Zangazanga said the State would require 10 days to conduct further investigations, saying if released he would interfere with the investigations.
“We would like to proceed with our investigations, we are not done. The State wants 10 more days to finalise investigations.
“He has been in hiding since the song was released, only to be arrested over the weekend,” she said.
Zangazanga also said they would need to get consent from the office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP).
“Again, the offense the accused is answering requires consent from the Director of Public Prosecution’s office and that the State is likely to change the charges,” she argued
But Nicely Msowoya, one of the lawyers defending the artist, quashed the prosecutor’s argument, saying Chavura handed himself to police after he received a phone call that he was needed for questioning.
He described the case as a misdemeanour that police could have simply given bail, saying if found guilty, the musician can only be subjected to a fine and not imprisonment.
Msowoya said the State should have demonstrated how Chavura would interfere with investigations if released on bail.
“It is a misdemeanor which ought to result in a fine. Secondly, for purposes of interrogating him, the state has had much time. The investigations pending have got nothing to do with the need for him to be in custody. In any case, the song being talked about, has had time to be scrutinized for 16 days,” he said.
The four pro bono lawyers said they have adopted Chavura’s case because the public has condemned him enough, apart from considering that he does not do anything for a living as he is a fresh graduate from Mzuzu University and rely on support from his parents in Namiwawa, Blantyre where he resides.
Chief resident magistrate Violet Chipawo made a preliminary ruling saying that “considering the volume of submissions made by both parties, I need more time to scrutinize and come up with a determination”.
She then adjourned the case to January 25.
The artist issued an apology through his Facebook page saying he did not mean to offend anybody but, some argued that the apology lacked sincerity and remorse.
Musicians Union of Malawi (MUM), Women’s Legal Resources Centre (Wolrec) and other activists condemned the song calling the development retrogressive.
In a statement Wolrec said the song is insulting the modesty of women and girls and therefore asked the Malawi Censorship board to ban the song.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :