Malawi Police officer Victor Nsolomo was convicted in connection to the mysterious circumstances that surrounded the death of a Natural Resources College (NRC) student, Edwin Msiska, who died in police custody in 2012, has been sentenced to at least 15 years’ jail for his murder.
Mzuzu High Court Judge Dingiswayo Madise passed the lengthy sentence on Tuesday. The court acquitted two Police officers George Kamphe and Lucius Mpakeni because the state failed to find sufficient evidence, beyond any reasonable doubt, to implicate the two.
Justice Madise noted that evidence tendered pointed to Nsolomo as the one who caused the unlawful death of Msiska.
Nyasa Times broke the story in 2012 that Edson Msiska was arrested for allegedly being found in possession of stolen property during the morning of 25th January, 2012 and was locked up at Mzuzu Police Station. He died on January, 29, 2012 in custody as police were arranging transportation to take him to the hospital.
A postmortem report from Mzuzu Central Hospital revealed Msiska was assaulted while in police custody, and that the cause of death was severe assault/trauma.
At the beginning of the trial, the suspects were charged with the offence of murder but by close of prosecution, the court found that there was not enough evidence to let Kamphe and Mpakeni answer a murder case. Instead, the two were charged with manslaughter.
Madise explained that the family of the deceased is perfectly entitled to sue for wrongful death and negligence in a civil court, citing total negligence by the Malawi Police Service.
Had the deceased been taken to the hospital earlier, Madise argued, Msiska could have been saved.
Chief State advocate Dzikondianthu Malunda said the State is pleased with a stiffer sentence to Nsoloma.
Msiska’s relation, Ester Lupafya, said the family will decide whether to sue Malawi Police.