As Malawians are waiting with keen interest on how the new government is going to deal with the case of Plundering of Public resources at Capitol Hill dubbed Cashgate by the Media, reports reaching FaceofMalawi indicate that High Court in Lilongwe is this Thursday, Jul 17, expected to rule on whether the state can release CCVT footage captured on the night former budget director Paul Mphwiyo was shot or not.

The case involves former Justice Minister Ralph Kasambara, prime suspect Pikka Manondo, Macdonald Kumwembe and others suspected of involvement in the shooting of the former budget director.

Director of public prosecutions Bruno Kalemba had previously refused to release the CCTV footage to the defence team saying the law did not permit them to do so. The footage is said to have been captured by CCTV cameras mounted at the gate of Mphiyo’s residence.

The court is also expected to rule on whether the defence can access data of mobile phone conversations in which some of the suspects are said to have issued Mr. Mphwiyo with death threats, which the state objects to.

According to director of public prosecutions Bruno Kalemba the ruling will be delivered by a new judge, Justice Michael Ntambo who has taken from Justice Esmie Chombo.

The change of judge comes after justice Chombo recused herself from the case. Reports that the judge had asked people to pray for her as she was under pressure from the previous government to preside over the case worried the defence.

Much as she withdrew from handling the case, Justice Chombo said the allegations that she had sought divine intervention on the matter were not true, saying she only withdrew for the sake of progress as the defence refused to disclose their source.

After the shooting of Mr. Phwiyo, former president Joyce Banda claimed he had been targeted by people trying to destroy evidence in the looting of millions of kwacha from state coffers in what is now popularly called the Cashgate scandal

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ZIMENE MUMAKONDA

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