Nsanje First Grade Magistrate Court has ordered a 42-year-old driver to pay a fine of K390, 000 or in default serve 48 months imprisonment with hard labour for committing traffic offences.

First Grade Magistrate Watson Mankhanamba heard that the driver, identified as Cosmas Paraffin, had an accident with his vehicle due to speeding which resulted in killing a person and injured several others.

Appearing before the court on June 12, 2020, Paraffin pleaded guilty and admitted to five counts of causing death by reckless driving, operating a motor vehicle on a public road without driver’s licence, failing to report an accident, failing to render assistance to the injured persons after an accident and operating a motor vehicle on a public road without certificate of insurance.

In his ruling, Mankhanamba observed that the driver needed a stiff punishment to deter would-be offenders.

“This is a serious crime which you committed, therefore, the court is demanding you to pay a fine of K390 000 or in default serve 48 months imprisonment,” Mankhanamba determined.

The court, through state prosecutor Sub Inspector Victor Nachuma heard that the driver on May 6, 2020, was driving a Toyota Hiace minibus from Nsanje heading towards Blantyre with eleven passengers on board.

He said upon arrival at Kalenso Village along Khulubvi Highway, the driver lost control of the motor vehicle due to speeding and swerved to the extreme dirty verge where it overturned.

Nachuma further told the court that following the impact, two passengers namely Gloria Sagwanti, 42, and Mary Julius, 18, both from Nyamula Village in Traditional Authority Tengani in Nsanje sustained serious injuries while nine others escaped with minor injuries.

Few days later, one of the victims, Belita Kashoti, 67, of Mbelenga Village in Traditional Authority Kapichi in Thyolo, died at Nsanje District Hospital.

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