The High Court of Malawi has varied bail conditions for two of the 15 suspects arrested in connection with the 2011 murder of Robert Chasowa, a fourth year engineering student at The Polytechnic, a constituent college of the University of Malawi.
The two suspects—Petros Tembo and Geoffrey Doff Botomani—are the first and second accused in the case.
Through their lawyer Ambokire Salimu, the two asked the court to vary their bail conditions in the criminal proceedings on the basis that the State has failed to prosecute them since their arrest in 2012.
In separate interviews yesterday, Salimu and acting registrar of the High Court of Malawi and the Supreme Court of Appeal Agnes Patemba said the two suspects made the application after noting that the State was not prosecuting them.
Patemba said the State did not object to the application to vary the bail conditions; hence, the court granted the suspects their wish.
Initially, Tembo and Botomani were reporting to police twice a week, but this condition has now changed to once in every three months.
The court has also given back to the suspects their K250 000 cash bond, meaning that it has now been changed to non-cash bond.
The two suspects sued government claiming K30 million each as compensation for alleged unlawful arrest.
Tembo and Botomani were arrested in 2012 following an outcome of a commission of inquiry chaired by current Chief Justice Andrew Nyirenda, which revealed that the two played a role in the brutal murder of Chasowa in September 2011.
After their arrests, the two were remanded for nearly seven months at Zomba Central Prison then later transferred to Chichiri Prison in Blantyre before being given bail. n