The Nkukula Magistrate’s Court in Lumbadzi has today failed to commence trial involving Centre for Democratic and Economic Development Initiative (Cdedi) executive director Slyvester Namiwa and 11 other members as presiding senior resident magistrate Cecilia Onsewa has been given new position of registrar of Industrial Relations Court (IRC).
The court is tomorrow expected to give directions on how the case will proceed and also rule on other matters.
The matters include a plea by defense lawyer Oscar Taulo who informed the court that the suspects successfully applied for judicial review of the matter at the High Court, challenging their arrest, and he therefore asked the lower court not to continue the case until the application is concluded.
The lawyer also told the court that the suspects also earlier made an application to stay the proceedings and that a ruling will be made on September 30th 2021.
He therefore pleaded with the court to stay the proceedings for now to avoid two courts from giving conflicting decisions on the same matter.
However the State through Police prosecutor Levison Mangani has asked the court to ignore the plea by the defense arguing it is an abuse of the court process to make several applications on a matter that is yet to start.
The 12 suspects earlier pleaded not guilty to the offence of holding a vigil against a written refusal by Lilongwe City Council.