As Lilongwe Resident Magistrate court continues hearing the fraud and money laundering case of K107 Million at Malawi Energy Regulatory Authority (Mera), the accused which include former CEO Collins Magalasi and 3 others are back in court this morning.
During the previous appearance one of the accused, business lady Dorothy Shonga Nkhoma popularly known as Cash Madam asked the court to give her three to four weeks to engage another lawyer arguing she does not want to be represented by her former counsel anymore.
Shonga has since identified a new lawyer to represent her in the case following the leaving of her previous lawyer, Gift Nankhuni.
Nkhoma’s legal representative Zwelithini Chipembere has asked Chief Resident Magistrate Patrick Chirwa for a 7-day adjournment of the case, saying in preparation, he has to read all disclosures made by the state.
Only a single witness has so far gone through examination in chief and now the defense is expected to cross-examine the witness.
Chief Resident Magistrate Patrick Chirwa has since thrown away a request by the defense to have the matter adjourned.
In his ruling on the matter, Chirwa stated that it is ill-timed for Dorothy Shonga Nkhoma’s request to be brought up now since she already knew the dates set for proceedings of the case as well as the kind of relationship the accused had with her previous lawyer to have warranted a quick resolution.
Having a new lawyer according to Chirwa does not need to disturb the flow of the case.
Chirwa has therefore ordered that the matter must continue and the lawyer has a right to recall any witness within-trial if there is a need.
Magalasi alongside Shonga, Mera`s spokesperson Patrick Maulidi, Procurement Officer Bright Mbewe are answering 16 counts which include fraud, money laundering, making a false statement, and knowingly using falsified documents with intent to deceive.
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