Mpinganjira's lawyers querry Reyneck Matemba's continued involvement in bribery case

Matemba

Defense for businessman Thom Mpinganjira has told the High Court in Blantyre they find the arrangement to bring Solicitor General Reyneck Matemba back in the case as unusual.

Patrice Nkhono, SC said the Anti Corruption Bureau (ACB) is independent and the proceedings are already consented to be handled by the ACB.

The court learnt at the start of proceedings on Tuesday where Mpinganjira was to defend himself or remain silent that the ACB wrote the Director of Public Prosecutions Steven Kayuni to request Matemba, the former ACB director to resume handling the case.

Nkhono said ACB has mandate to prosecute cases under the Corruption Prosecution Act.

He argued the Deputy Director of the ACB could have appointed a prosecutor.

"We haven't seen the letter from ACB to the Director of Public Prosecutions if such letter was written the DPP should have known better this is executive interference," Nkhono said.

He argued they might want to come to it later and asked he judge not to rule on it.

But Matemba rose up to say there was nothing wrong explaining he was surprised where the issue of executive interference was coming from adding he is not new to the case and that the Deputy ACB Director wrote the DPP based on their mandate.

He added that the Deputy Director does not have the power to appoint prosecutor but the DPP. 

Additionally, the Criminal Prosecution Act gives power to ask for delegation because even powers to prosecute belongs to the DPP.

"My presence should not be cause for concern or unease. We already gave our evidence and he [Mpinganjira] was found with case to answer. Where is executive interference coming in. I have no personal interest in the matter but for justice to prevail."

Matemba also questioned the return of counsel Tamanda Chokhotho on the Defense team and wanted to find out if they filed notice of practice.

"He is back but we have not been served."

When Nkhono rose up he said Chokhotho appointment's  was formalised and noticed filed and served on the ACB.

Mpinganjira is back in court on Wednesday.