Court orders inquest into Bob Mtekama’s death
High Court Judge Annabel Mtalimanja Monday granted the State an order of inquest into the death of former director of Malawi Police Service’s Criminal Investigations Department, Bob Mtekama.
Mtekama, who died on August 4 2020, was at the centre of investigations into high-profile cases, including the 2014 death of Anti- Corruption Bureau director of corporate affairs Issa Njauju.
The State, through office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), had asked the High Court to grant the order for an inquest to investigate and establish the cause of Mtekama’s death.
Mtekama’s death was initially attributed to Covid.
The State asked the High Court to grant the order because, ostensibly, Mtekama’s relatives were not satisfied with reports that he died of Covid-related complications, claiming that he was poisoned. Thus, an inquest needed to be done to establish the cause.
Outside the court, DPP Steve Kayuni said, as per order, the matter would go to the magistrate court where a call would be made for witnesses to come forward.
“When a call is made, it depends on how many witnesses know anything to do with the death of the person who is the subject of that inquest.
“So, it is very difficult to, at this moment, talk about how many [people] will come forward,” Kayuni said.
He said, according to the law, depending on how the case would unfold, there could be a possibility of exhuming Mtekama’s remains to conduct an autopsy.
According to the State, no post-mortem was done to establish the real cause of his death.
Last week, Malawi Human Rights Commission (MHRC) Executive Secretary Habiba Osman said the commission was also interested in investigations into the death of the former top police investigator.
She said the case was brought before MHRC and, after looking at the evidence that was coming out, the commission referred the matter to the DPP.
Mathews Kasanda is a journalist who holds a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from University of Malawi (The Polytechnic).
In 2015, Media Institute of Southern Africa awarded him the Best Print Media Education Journalist of the Year accolade.
He joined Times Group Newsroom in September 2019.