UTM Party president Dr Saulos Chilima’s lawyer Bright Theu on Wednesday rounded off cross examining Bob Chimkango, the second witness for President Peter Mutharika who is the first respondent in the case by virtue of being the declared winner of the presidential race in the disputed May 21 Tripartite Elections, by picking holes in his statement.
The second day of the cross examination showed that Chimkango, a representative of the governing Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) at the main tally centre during the election, was ignorant in so many things like who was supposed to sign for the form 67C at the polling center and that the Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) was to use ICT results management system among others.
In the course of the cross-examination, Theu had to remind Chimkango, a lawyer working for State-owned Malawi Housing Corporation (MHC), that he is under oath and knows the consequences of lying under the same when the witness told the court that did not get some tally sheets from MEC at the tally center.
Hot on the day was the issue whereby a presiding officer Rabecca Chirwa signed forms 72C from Rumphi West and Mzuzu City polling centers.
Through cross examination, Chimkango told the court that the form 72C from Rumphi West appeared to be fake.
“Are you suggesting that Rabecca Chirwa, a constituency returning officer employed by MEC filled a fake document,” asked Theu to which the witness response was positive, adding that even the entries were wrong as well.
Chimkango also observed that some form 66Cs his team collected from the party monitors had no monitors signatures while the same forms but from MEC had the signatures.
“In your own understanding, who is supposed to fill these forms?” asked Theu.
“I don’t know,” he answered.
“Mr Chimkango you were in charge of 35 people at the main tally center and you were also a roving monitor on polling day, you say you have no idea of who should fill results on form 66C? Is that an honest answer?” fired back Theu.
“I can speculate that the one in charge of the polling center is the one to fill these forms,” answered Chimkango who also responded negative when he was asked if a village headman was supposed to fill a form 66C.
On irregularities, Theu indicated that there were a lot of polling centers where tallying of results had so many irregularities but lead the witness through Fanuel and Kamuzu polling stations where tallying of vote cast results were mismanaged.
For example, it was discovered that 824 voted were uncounted for while at Kamuzu Polling Center there were extra 666 ballot papers by the close of polling and counting of votes.
“Looking at the information provided, do you find anywhere where there is a mention of where 824 votes went and where 666 ballot papers came from?” he asked.
“Nowhere it is being mentioned where 824 votes went and where the extra 666 came from,” Chimkango answered.
After finishing the cross examination, Malawi Congress Party (MCP) president Lazarus Chakwera lead lawyer senior counsel Mordecai Msisha told president judge Heally Potani that they were satisfied with Theu’s cross examination.
“Going through the cross examination by the first petitioner, we are satisfied with it and therefore we have no intention to cross examine this witness,” said Msisha respsenting the second petitioner.
During re-examination in the afternoon, President Mutharika’s lawyer Frank Mbeta swiftly moved in to lead Chimkango in ironing out some statements from his cross-examination.
Chilima—who contested in the May 21 Tripartite Elections presidential race while serving as country’s Vice-President after being voted to the office as a pair with Mutharika in 2014—and Chakwera are seeking nullification of the elections on the basis of irregularities in the results management system.
The five-judge panel comprising Ivy Kamanga, Healey Potani, Redson Kapindu, Mike Tembo and Dingiswayo Madise indicated it would conclude hearing the matter on December 6 and thereafter have about 45 days to deliver its verdict.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :