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Tuesday, March 5, 2024

State Doesn’t Want Witnesses in Bushiri Case, Appeals to High Court: Are There Witnesses Really?


Prophet Shepherd Bushiri and wife, Prophetess Mary, were arrested twice in South Africa and on several appearances before the courts, they were never given trial because the State argued it was not ready with witnesses.

Because of that, the Prophets left South Africa in November 2020 and returned to their home country, Malawi, to seek justice before Malawi’s Constitution.

But seeking justice means the Prophets facing their South African accusers, the witnesses. But are these witnesses real?

See the timeline below:

22 MARCH 2021: Prophet Bushiri lawyer, Wapona Kita, applies to the Magistrate to have witnesses come to Malawi to testify and also to be cross-examined because the law requires so. The State opposed the application arguing it was not trial.

29 MARCH 2021: Chief Resident Magistrate Patrick Chirwa rules that South Africa should bring witnesses in Malawi because the law says so. The State agreed with the ruling and asked the Court to be given a month to prepare the witnesses come to Malawi.

3rd JUNE 2021: Director of Public Prosecution (DPP) assured the media that South Africa is ready with the witnesses and the case will proceed according to the earlier court ruling.

4th JUNE 2021: No witnesses were availed in Malawi courts. Instead, the State applied to the Magistrate to allow the witnesses testify through video conferencing citing COVID-19 fears. Prophet Bushiri lawyers opposed the application arguing it does not have a legal basis.

8th June 2021: Magistrate Chirwa dismissed the State’s video conferencing application as it did not have a legal basis and reiterated that South Africa must bring the witness in Malawi to testify.

As we are waiting for the hearing to resume on July 12, South Africa has changed tune…

29th June 2021: South Africa has made an application before the Malawi High Court to review Magistrate Chirwa’s ruling on 29th March 2021 to have South Africa witnesses come and testify before Malawi courts.

Question: why did South Africa fail to apply for review soon after ruling was made on the 29th March or any day during course of April?

There are no witnesses in this case. This case is just a move by South Africa to keep Prophet Bushiri name in negative limelight.

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