Malawi: Bushiri Wants Extradition Matter Referred to Malawi Constitutional Court for Interpretation – Matter Adjourned to Friday for Ruling

Magistrate Patrick Chirwa has adjourned the extradition case involving Prophet Shephered Bushiri and wife, Mary, to Friday, 23rd April, for a ruling if the matter should be referred to Constitutional Court for ruling.

Bushiri lawyer, Wapona Kita, started the day by telling the court they are applying to have the entire extradition request thrown out for “lack of legal basis” and asks the court to refer the matter to the Chief Justice to certify it for the Constitutional Court hearing.

The state, led by Steve Kayuni, contested this submission, stating that at the last appearance Magistrate Chirwa ruled that there should be no further applications relating to this matter.

However, Magistrate Chirwa has ruled that even though he had earlier said there should be no more applications for relief in the #Bushiri matter, he has no option but to allow the latest application to have the extradition case thrown out; he says the application and its reasons are compelling to the point that the court cannot ignore them.

He added that the matter relates to interpretation of the constitution and law and therefore cannot be ignored.

Bushiri’s lawyer, then, rose and started making arguments saying the extradition case has no merit and should be thrown out.

“The request calls for interpretation as it is based on the SADC protocol and its implementation in Malawi law. He adds that three judges of the high court will sit as a quasi “constitutional court” to determine if the treaty is applicable,” he said.

He added that the application by South Africa complies with the SADC Protocol, which is a treaty, instead of complying with Malawi’s extradition law. He quotes sections 19, and 6 of Malawi’s laws. He argues that a treaty between countries cannot rule supreme over domestic law.