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MCP pulls out one witness

TESTIFIED—Mkaka (right) greets an MCP supporter outside the court

Malawi Congress Party (MCP) has withdrawn one witness, Richard Chimwendo Banda, who was expected to testify immediately after Eisenhower Mkaka at the Constitutional Court sitting in Lilongwe.

MCP lawyer Modecai Msisha Monday told the court that the party will only parade the last witness, Daud Suleman, as Chimwendo Banda’s statement is similar to Mkaka’s.

“If you remember at the onset of the case, people had limited time to think through what to do and most of the statements were just a repetition of what others already said,” he said.

Before parading Suleman, the court will hear an application that Malawi Electoral Commission (Mec) has submitted which has a bearing on the cross-examination of the witness.

Mec wants the court to stop Suleman from using electronic gadgets when testifying, saying the move is aimed at ensuring that the commission’s servers are secure.

Msisha, downplayed Mec’s fears that the use of a gadget would compromise the security of Mec’s system.

“We have responded using the IT expertise that we have from Suleman to show that he will not acquire any knowledge about their system which could be used to compromise its security. He already has a database which Mec provided and he will use that,” he said.

Yesterday, the court adjourned early after lawyer Frank Mbeta, representing President Peter Mutharika, asked for more time to review areas of cross-examination to avoid repetition of what Attorney General, Kalekeni Kaphale, has already tackled.

MCP president Lazarus Chakwera and his UTM counterpart Saulos Chilima are challenging the election results, accusing Mec of mismanaging them.

The immediate-past vice-president also withdrew his remaining 34 witnesses in the case saying they did not want duplication adding that it was in the interest of the court to expedite the case.

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