Thursday, June 20, 2024

DPP Should think Twice on Proposal to Punish those Who Withdraw Cases before the Court-Sinkamba

Share

Green Party President Peter Sinkamba has said that the Director of Public Prosecution should think twice before punishing people who withdraw cases.

In a statement to the media in reaction to the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Lillian Siyuni’s proposed an amendment to the law to introduce penalties for people with a tendency of recanting or withdrawing court cases, Mr. Sinkamba said that he did not think the DPP fully understood the consequences, especially to the State, if punishment were to be handed down to persons that withdrawal cases.

Mr. Sinkamba said that punishment will have to be meted to both the state and individuals, adding that what good for the goose must be good for the gander.

Citing the treason case against Hakainde Hichilema and fives others, Mr Sinkamba said that the State would be paying colossal sums on account of nolle prosequis which the DPP enters time and time again.

Below is the full statement

The Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Lillian Siyuni has proposed an amendment to the law to introduce penalties for people with a tendency of recanting or withdrawing court cases. She is alleging bribery by suspects as the main cause.

She laments that the tendency by victims to withdraw abruptly was terribly affecting her work due to the huge waste of time spent on cases that ended up closed.

Did the DPP seriously apply her mind to the proposal?

I do not think so.

Let me start by providing some simple explanation of the principle that the DPP has called into question: nolle prosequi. The nolle prosequi is a latin maxim meaning “we shall no longer prosecute.” This is typically a declaration made to the judge or magistrate by a prosecutor in a criminal case or even by a plaintiff in a civil or criminal lawsuit, either before or during trial. The meaning is that the case against the defendant is being dropped. So, basically, nolle prosequi is a formal notice of abandonment by a plaintiff or prosecutor of all or part of a suit.

It is true that suspects, especially assault ones, tend to pay their victims so as to withdraw their cases. Wives and husbands also tend to withdraw GBV cases against their spouses. Boyfriends and girlfriends, and others, who are related in one way or the other do withdraw cases after monetary gains or family interventions. The question is: should victims be punished for withdrawal of cases?

I do not think the DPP fully understands the consequences, especially to the State, if punishment were to be handed down to persons that withdrawal cases. First of all, if punishment be meted out, it should be done to the State and to individuals. For what is good for the goose must be good for the gander. If bribery is the reason why individuals enter nolle prosequi, then bribery is the reason why the DPP always enters nolles. If corruption is the reason why individuals enter nolle prosequis, then the same is the reason why the DPP always enters nolles. Thus, if individuals must be punished for entering nolle prosequis, then the DPP must be punished for doing so too.

And looking at cases that the DPP enters nolles, e.g. the treason case against Hakainde Hichilema and fives others, the State would be paying colossal sums on account of nolle prosequis which the DPP enters time and time again.

So, Ba DPP, tondolo musuma.

Don’t start a fight you will regret sooner rather than later.

Already, government is grappling with the payment of retirees per Constitution Amendment 2016. Now, government wants to reverse implications of the Article through Bill 10.

Don’t start fights from all fronts.

10 COMMENTS

  1. Kaizar have respect for your future President, I mean His Excellency President Peter Sinkamba wef 21 August 2021 since the other one will not stand again.

    7
    1
  2. The law should be changed so that where the State enters a nolle, it should compensate the accused for causing psychological stress. The DPP’s chambers should always have enough evidence to bring a case before the courts and thereafter, allow due process. I have never seen a DPP with so many nolles per capita in the world. Zambia’s DPP is the biggest waster of court time.

    11
    1
  3. For the DPP to be to be advised by ganjaman, what a shame? These PF chaps did they really graduate from UNZA or they just bought their degrees? UNZA should think of revoking these qualifications to save its reputation. This includes Mmembe, Kabimba, etc.

    @KZ help me. Where is the evidence that Lungu is a law graduate? Look at how he bungled the KCM issue; ministers’ illegal stay when parliament was dissolved, illegal debts without parliamentary approval, signing 2016 constitution blindly only to end up trapping himself, 3rd term issue, etc. The guy is supposed to be just imbibing kachasu in chawama instead of pretending to be president messing other people’s lives. Next year whether he likes it or not he will be sent back to chawama never ever to return again to cause problems.

    7
    2
  4. In some countries, you cannot just withdraw a case. The petition to withdraw a case needs to be presented to a judge who will hear the reasons for the withdraw and if it makes sense the judge then approves the withdrawal.

  5. The DPP is trying to violate the Rights of litigants. This is wrong, illegal and unconstitutional. So if the DPP enters a Nolle Prosqui she should be heavily fined. The DPP entered a Nolle when HH was arrested and imprisoned for 127 days. The DPP is starting an expensive precedent for the Govt of the day. The writing is on the wall.

Comments are closed.

Read more

Local News

Discover more from Lusaka Times-Zambia's Leading Online News Site - LusakaTimes.com

Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

Continue reading