The State has asked the High Court to admit a statement by first Cashgate convict the late Tressa Senzani in the K2.4 billion case involving former Ministry of Finance budget director Paul Mphwiyo and 18 others.
Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Mary Kachale made the application yesterday after the defence concluded interrogating principal State witness Leonard Kalonga, a former Ministry of Tourism officer convicted in August 2015 on his own plea of guilty.
Senzani, who rose to the position of principal secretary, passed on in December 2016 after walking to freedom in October of the same year after serving part of the nine months sentence for theft and three years for money laundering.
But invoking Section 173 (c) of the Criminal Procedures and Evidence Code (CPEC), the DPP told the High Court sitting at the more spacious Lilongwe City Council Civic Centre chamber that it was imperative that the court admits Senzani’s statement in the matter.
The cited section says in part that admission of a statement is applicable when it was against the pecuniary or proprietary interest of the person making it, or when, if true, it would expose him or would have exposed him to a criminal prosecution or to a suit for damages.
Senzani was first arrested by the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) on October 21 2013 for alleged crimes bordering on corruption after the bureau received a complaint alleging that government officers at Capital Hill were making dubious entries in the Integrated Financial Management and Information System (Ifmis), government’s electronic payment platform.
In the statement, the DPP wants the court to admit a statement that Senzani had made which mentioned former president Joyce Banda and Mphwiyo as masterminds of Cashgate, the plunder of resources at Capital Hill through dubious payments.
Today, the State is expected to re-examine Kalonga before parading another witness.