The Lilongwe Senior Resident Magistrates’ Court Monday ruled against granting bail to Malawi Energy Regulatory Authority (Mera) Chief Executive Officer Collins Magalasi and his business partner, Dorothy Shonga Nkhoma, popularly known as ‘Cash Madam’.
Co-accused persons, Mera spokesperson Patrick Maulidi and Bright Mbewe, were also denied the temporary freedom.
Magalasi, Shonga Nkhoma and Maulidi are answering charges of fraud and money laundering while Mbewe was charged with abuse of office based on procurement of various items whose total value was K107 million from Shonga Nkhoma’s Vink Enterprises.
Senior Resident Magistrate, Florence Msekandiwana, made the decision after state prosecutor Moja Phiri told the court that the three know witnesses to the case and may interfere with investigations.
“I would like to plead with the court that the accused should remain in custody as we are about to conclude our investigations on the matter. We fear that the accused could jeopardise our investigations. They may interfere with witnesses if released,” Phiri said.
After pronouncing herself on the bail application, Msekandiwana adjourned the case to Wednesday.
After the adjournment, lawyer representing the Mera officials, Ian Malera, said he would wait for tomorrow’s hearing.
Magalasi, Maulidi, Mbewe and Shonga Nkhoma were charged with money laundering and fraud after being arrested last week.