Debate on the theft of court recordings from a High Court reporter at a Lilongwe shopping mall car park continued yesterday with private practice lawyer Justin Dzonzi saying the story sounds suspicious.
Speaking in an interview with The Nation in reaction to the theft, Dzonzi, who is also executive director of Justice Link, said police should investigate the matter thoroughly as the whole situation sounds “abnormal and bizarre”.
On Tuesday, a High Court reporter was robbed of recorders and other documents relating to Cashgate and the attempted murder of former Ministry of Finance budget director Paul Mphwiyo days after Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Mary Kachale described the current proceedings in court as being punctuated by ‘mafia-like operations’.
Said Dzonzi: “What the [court] reporter did was very unprocedural and highly suspicious. What was she doing with those important documents? Not even court lawyers are allowed to carry such documents out of the court room and here she was. This act alone speaks volumes.”
Dzonzi said police should thoroughly investigate the matter.
But Judiciary spokesperson Mlenga Mvula, who on Wednesday said the theft would not derail the cases as the court has other copies, yesterday dismissed any suggestions of foul play.
He said it was just negligence on the part of the reporter and that she will be disciplined accordingly.
Said Mvula: “It is not on to make such conclusions. We condemn what happened in the strongest terms, but like I said earlier, the court is going ahead and that nothing will change. As Judiciary, we will just put strict measures to ensure this never happens.”
Ministry of Justice and Constitutional Affairs spokesperson Apoche Itimu said the DPP was not referring to such acts when she said the court seems to be dealing with ‘mafia-like operations’.
Police have since confirmed that they are investigating the matter.n