Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Suspended Lusaka based Judge wants his case referred to the constitutional court

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SUSPENDED Lusaka based magistrate, Maggie Tantameni Kunda who is among other offences charged with abuse of authority, has asked the Lusaka magistrate court to refer her case to the Constitutional Court to determine whether she can be tried by a court of equal jurisdiction.

Ms Tantameni through her lawyer, Prosper Muyatwa also wants the Constitutional Court to render it’s opinion on whether principal resident margistrate , Kenneth Mulife who is the complainant in the matter on behalf of the judiciary, can as well allocate the case to Chisamba based margistrate, Susan Mangalashi who is of a different jurisdiction.

This is in a matter in which Tantameni together with Felix Mkandawire , a court interpreter, Francis
Mphanza, a senior public prosecutor,
and Didie Kangwa, senior clerk of court are facing three counts of abuse of authority, removal of property under lawful seizure and stealing by persons in public service.

It is alleged in the first count that Tantameni and Mphanza on November 8 2017 at Lusaka being persons employed in the public service as margistrate and senior public prosecutor respectively, jointly and whilst acting together did use the position of their respective offices to obtain property, profit or benefit for themselves or another .

In the second count, it is alleged that Mkandawire, Mphanza and Kangwa on November 8 2017 at Lusaka, jointly and whilst acting together knowingly and with intent to hinder or defeat the process, did conceal 34.0 kilograms of ephedrine valued at K1, 870. 000.

The ephedrine was taken under the process of authority of the court of Ms Tantameni.

In the third count, it is alleged that Mkandawire, Mphanza, Tantameni and Kangwa between November 8 2017 and December 30, 2017 at Lusaka being employed in the public service as court interpreter, senior public prosecutor, magistrate and senior clerk of court respectively, jointly and whilst acting together did steal 34. 0 kilograms of
ephedrine.

The drug was valued at K1, 870.000 the property of Government of the Republic of Zambia which came into their possession by virtue of their employment.

When the matter came up for plea yesterday before Ms Mangalashi, Mr Muyatwa raised preliminary issues to have the case refereed to the constitutional court for interpretation on whether Tantameni can be tried by Ms Mangalashi who is also a margistrate like her.

Mr Muyatwa said ” This honourable court has similar authority as accused number three and for this court to try A 3 on matters she dwelt with during the course of her duties as a margistrate will be a gross assault of to the course of justice”.

He said that Ms Mangalashi was not in a position to impartially and justifiably despense justice to try Tantameni in the state she was in, as it was a serious misdirection as her immunity must first be lifted which process he said must be moved by the prosecution pursuant to the correct section of the law and the court of competent jurisdiction as immunity was a constitutional issue.

“As it stands A 3 is a constituted margistrate who only happens to be on suspension and Section 7 of the Sub Court Act applies to her in the sense that all margistrates exercise equal jurisdiction” Mr Muyatwa argued.

Mr Muyatwa further submitted that the case against his client should have been disposed off through purely disciplinary adding ” because of the very embarrassing conadra surrounding the prosecution of the sitting margistrate “.

He prayed that the order to regret the case to the Constitutional Court be granted so that the ends of justice can be secured .

The prosecution applied to have the case adjourned to enable them digest Tantameni ‘s submissions.

Ms Mangalashi adjourned the case to October 10, 2018.

3 COMMENTS

    • Good move! Because CinCourt is where the Nolle Proseque are famous. As long as you have tons of preliminary hears, you only get contept.

  1. CHALO CHAWOLA ZO WONA!!
    Politicians thieves, Lawyers thieves, Policemen/Women thieves, Clergy thieves, Cadres thieves, Doctors & Nurses thieves, Cats, & Dogs thieves.
    WELCOME TO CHAGWA’S UBOMBA MWIBALA -DUNUNA REVERSE REPUBLIC.

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