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Court processing notes for Raphael Kasambara’s appeal

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Former justice minister, Raphael Kasambara ,and his co-accused are today expected to file sentencing submissions on their conviction in readiness for hearing on Monday next week as the court has yet to consider their appeal.

Judiciary spokesperson, Mlenga Mvula, said the file for former budget director, Paul Mphwiyo’s 2013 shooting case which saw Kasambara, MacDonald Kumwembe and Pika Manondo convicted, is bulky and needs more time for proper compilation before the court identifies judges to sit for appeal case.

High Court Judge, Michael Mtambo, sitting in Lilongwe on July 21 this year, convicted Kasambara of the offence of conspiracy to murder and Kumwembe and Manondo of the offences of attempted murder and conspiracy to murder but on July 22 the convicts appealed against the ruling.

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“During the hearing process, the Judges were taking notes using long hand, the court reporters were also taking notes using recorders and all those notes have to be typed and perfected and then compared, including the notes from the two parties, that is, the State and the defendants. Thereafter, it is when the notice of appeal and the files will be sent to the Supreme Court of Appeal in Blantyre to be given case number as well as the responsible judges,” Mvula said.

He, however, could not specify on when the process of compiling the notes in readiness for the appeal case will be completed.

“We are talking of typing and perfecting notes for a case that was heard for a long time and it is not easy to just say it will take two days or four days to complete the process. We need time to do a perfect job,” he said.

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In the notice filed through Lilongwe District Registry a day after their conviction, Kasambara and fellow appellants argue that Mtambo erred in law and fact in holding that the prosecution had made out a case to answer for them when the prosecution had failed to prove it.

They also argue that Mtambo erred in law and fact in refusing to recuse himself when there was ample evidence of his being apparently biased against them right from the start of the case up to the time when he suddenly revoked the bail for Kumwembe and Kasambara.

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