The Attorney General (AG) has filed motions at the High Court in Lilongwe to vacate an injunction Rwandan convict Vincent Murekezi obtained to block his extradition case.
Murekezi is wanted for genocide-related crimes back in his native country.
The Lilongwe Principal Resident Magistrate Court initially set April 10 2017 to start hearing the re-application of the extradition case.
But Murekezi blocked the proceedings through an injunction he obtained through his lawyer Wapona Kita on April 3 2017 at the High Court in Lilongwe.
State prosecutor and senior assistant chief State advocate, Steven Kayuni, confirmed the intervention of the AG in an interview on Friday.
“The court has since set April 12 2017 as the date when it will start hearing State submissions on the matter. The State is keen to have this case finished as soon as possible because we don’t want to be seen as if we are holding on to the offender,” he said.
Kita could not be reached on his mobile phone yesterday.
Murekezi is challenging an extradition treaty Malawi and Rwanda signed in February this year on the basis of what his lawyers say is the use of a wrong minister in signing the treaty, lack of treaty domestication, absence of an extradition request and failure to lay subsequent legislation before Parliament.
In an application for the review that Kita filed at Lilongwe Registry on March 28, the defence faults the involvement of Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Francis Kasaila in the execution of the treaty.
Kita argues that the Foreign Affairs minister has no such powers under Section 3 of the Act.
Murekezi is also challenging Minister of Home Affairs and Internal Security Grace Chiumia’s decision to implement the extradition treaty when it has not entered into force by way of domestication as stipulated under Section 211 of the Constitution.
The defence is also against Chiumia’s decision to implement subsidiary legislation—namely the Extradition (Designated Countries) Amendment Order 2017—without laying it before Parliament as stipulated in Section 58 of the Constitution. n