The High Court in Zomba on Thursday afternoon overruled an application by Catholic Priest, Father Thomas Muhosha to prevent the court from using a WhatsApp conversation between him and another accused person as evidence in the killing of a man with albinism in Machinga.
The High Court Judge, Zione Ntaba overruled the application by Muhosha’s lawyer, Ian Twea who wanted the court to disregard a WhatsApp conversation as evidence between Father Muhosha and a police officer, Chikondi Chileka of Nselema Police substation in Machinga.
Father Muhosha, 48 and Chileka, 35 are both implicated in the killing of Mac Donald Masambuka, 32 of Chikweo in Machinga.
Twea said using a WhatsApp conversation is a breach of privacy between his client and Chileka adding that this was contrary to Section 21 of the Malawi Constitution.
The defense lawyer also said the information on the WhatsApp was taken without Father Muhosha’s consent and without court search warrant.
But the State Prosecutor , Senior Advocate, Steve Kayuni said that the way the information was extracted was in line with the laws of Malawi hence no breach of privacy for the accused persons.
In an interview with Malawi News Agency, Kayuni said he was happy that the court overruled the application by the defense lawyer.
“The High Court will continue with the WhatsApp evidence and will also continue hearing the case of all the 12 accused persons in the case that include a medical personnel, Luckness Magombo, 35,” said Kayuni.
Senior Resident Magistrate Court handled the case in July this year but transferred it to the High Court.
The 12 suspects in the case are answering charges ranging from causing harm to another person with disability to human trafficking.
The late Masambuka was murdered on March 9th, 2018 at Manja Village, Traditional Authotity Chikweo where it is alleged that his brother, Cassim White Masambuka was involved.
In August, the High Court denied Muhosha bail.