The Malawi Police Service (MPS) has said even though the woman who was shot by former President Peter Mutharika’s aide Norman Chisale has withdrawn the attempted murder charges, MPS will commit the case to the office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) for direction since it is criminal in nature.
In an affidavit of withdrawal of complaint, the woman who was shot, Sigele Amani, said she was withdrawing charges that may be levelled against Chisale as the man had apologised.
“I am hereby withdrawing any charges that may have been levelled against Mr Paulosi Norman Chisale as it is not my intention to have him prosecuted for something which he did not intend to do,’’ reads part of the affidavit, sworn under Commissioner of Oaths in Blantyre.
According to Amani, Chisale told her that the shooting was accidental as he was defending himself against robbers. She also said Chisale has been providing all the assistance she required.
“When I was walking, I saw three cars passing by going the Nkolokosa direction to Kudya and as the third car passed by, I felt as if my foot had stepped on a glass that burst.
“I was later taken to Soche Police Station for attention where I was recorded a statement and then went to Queen Elizabeth Hospital. On the same night, Mr Chisale came on the hospital bed and apologised, saying it was accidental as he did not anticipate that the bullet would hit me,’’ Amani said.
National Police spokesperson James Kadadzera has said they will wait to hear from the DPP but at the moment, Chisale is still in custody.
“I am informed that Chisale’s lawyer has notified the police of the withdrawal statement…however, this is a criminal issue and the file will be referred to the office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) for legal direction,” he said.
In a telephone interview, legal commentator Edge Kanyongolo said it is only the state that can withdraw criminal cases.
“A criminal case cannot depend on whether somebody withdraws or not, it is a matter between the state and the accused so it is the state which decides, only the state has the power to decide whether to withdraw or not,’’ Kanyongolo said.
On Friday, there was drama at the Lilongwe Magistrates Court when Police re-arrested Chisale, moments after he was given bail in a different case.
After spending three days in police custody following his initial arrest on Tuesday last week on fraud and money laundering charges, Chisale on Friday briefly made bail, only to be taken back into police custody following the attempted murder charge.