State prosecutors in the case in which Mzuzu City Council Mayor, Gift Nyirenda is accused of defiling a 14-year-old girl, have added three more counts to the case during a hearing at the Mzuzu Magistrates Court.
The additional counts were made after the state was joined by three lawyers from the Office of the Director of Public Prosecution, Counsels Daniel Kuyokwa, Waliko Nkosi and Lukia Jafali.
Lead lawyer representing the state, Counsel Kuyopa told the court that the state had amended the charge sheet to include the three counts which are all related to the case.
He said besides the defilement case which the Nyirenda is being accused to have committed on August1 2022, the state has added another defilement count which state lawyers say happened on August 3, 2022 and two more counts of having sexual intercourse with a minor under one’s care.
The defence through lawyer Andy Kaonga objected and accused the state of being on a "fishing expedition” to secure a conviction at all cost.
But Senior Resident Magistrate, Felix Kamtsalira ruled in favour of state.
Kamtsalira said the counts were committed on different days and he ordered that the trial be continued with parading the first witness whose name was read in court as 'TM' who was the survivor of the alleged crimes.
On their part, state prosecutors however asked the court to allow the witness testify in camera a request which was accepted by the magistrate.
However, defence lawyers also moved an application to have the case heard at the house of the accused at Nkhorongo in Mzuzu City where the crimes are alleged to have been committed but the magistrate also shot down the proposal saying it is not necessary.
Nyirenda who is currently on bail, was arrested on August 13,2022 at his residence in Mzuzu and he has since pleaded not guilty to the four counts levelled against him.
Meanwhile, the case has since been adjourned to 18 October 2022.