MacDonald Masambuka murder case back on January 21
By Serah Chilora:
The High Court in Blantyre is from January 21, 2020 expected to continue hearing the murder case in which 12 individuals were found with cases to answer in connection to the death of MacDonald Masambuka, a 22-year-old person with albinism.
In November last year, the court adjourned after hearing from the tenth suspect Chikondi Chileka, a police officer who was reported to have implicated some senior government officials.
In separate interviews, both Ministry of Justice and Constitutional Affairs spokesperson Pilirani Masanjala and lawyer Trouble Kalua from Legal Aid Bureau said the case will be back in court to finalise the defence’s testimonies.
“The case is coming back to court this month actually so we will finish this month because the defence is doing the case right now. The prosecution team finished last year so now we are on the defence case,” said Masanjala.
Without commenting on what the previous witness said in relation to the people implicated, Kalua said the suspects are saying what they could have said.
“The case is still in court the accused persons are testifying in their defense so far out of the 12, ten have testified and the last two are coming. And the case is coming back on the 21st January so that they conclude with the two witnesses.
“I wouldn’t want to comment on what he said because those are matters of evidence the court must take note, all I can say is that those that have testified have said what they could have said and we are now waiting for the last two people to give their testimony,” Kalua said.
In May last year High Court Judge Zione Ntaba recused herself from the case, almost six months after trial commenced in August 2018.
In a statement announcing her recusal from the case, Justice Ntaba noted the continued reference of Dr Hetherwick Ntaba, a top Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) official, by the defence.
Ntaba said that Dr Ntaba’s name was raised when the Legal Aid Bureau, which is representing the accused in the matter, questioned an Inspector Zimba on the matter in October 2018.
The name also came up during Dr Charles Dzamalala’s testimony in November last year
The suspect, Alfred Yohane, who is answering five counts in the case, told the court that the top official directed him and two others, a Catholic Priest, Father Thomas Muhosha, and a police officer, Chikondi Chileka, to find bones of a person with albinism.
Masambuka went missing on March 8 2018 and his body was found with some body parts missing a few weeks later.
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