Corporal’s death fallout: Police bring 25 to court

02Jul 2022
The Guardian
Corporal’s death fallout: Police bring 25 to court

A TOTAL of 25 residents of Ngorongoro District in Arusha Region yesterday appeared before resident magistrate Herieth Mhenga, in connection with the murder of policeman number G 4200, Corporal Garlus Mwita.

The suspects, including the ruling party chairman for Ngorongoro District, Ndirango Laizer and nine ward councillors were brought to the court under heavy security.

Reading the charges, state attorney Upendo Shemkole alleged that the suspects conducted the felony on June 10, causing the death of the police officer.

Garlus was hit by an arrow shot by an unknown person while guarding over a land demarcation exercise in the Loliondo game reserve area.

Upendo Shemkole and Jeremia Mtobesya stood for the prosecution, while defence lawyers namely Jebra Kambole, Joseph ole Shangai, Peter Madeleka, Denis Mosses, Adolf Temba, William Ernest, Yonas Masiaya, Nicholous ole Senteu, Samaito Mollel, Julius Lukumay, Ngeeyan Laizer, Deogratias Njau and John Lairumbe are all listed to defend the 25 on the charge list.

The prosecuting side told the magistrate that the case was brought for hearing, requesting space to alter the charge sheet to add one charge, while advocates Mtobesya and Madeleka objected to this application saying it was not yet time for making such changes.

 “It is clear that the case is in its early stages, so there is no way one can alter charges. It is contrary to procedure as this court has no jurisdiction to hear the case, we are requesting the court to reject the request,” the lead advocate intoned.

In response, the prosecutor said while the court had no jurisdiction to hear the case and it is early stages of investigations, there is no procedural limitation on altering the charge sheet.

After the legal battle, the court was adjourned and later resumed to issue a minor ruling on the matter.

The resident magistrate said that after going through the arguments from the two sides, he agreed with the prosecuting side to make changes to the charges. The procedure does not violate any right of the accused, he asserted.

Reading new charges to the accused, state attorney Shemkole in the first charge claimed that the accused conspired to kill government officers including police guards who were participating in a demarcation exercise.

In the second charge, it is alleged that on June 10 at Ololosokwan village in Ngorongoro district the suspects killed a police officer on duty.

Defence lawyer Mtobesya requested the state to fast track investigations, saying some of the suspects are aged and others are students and need the case to be over in a timely manner.

The magistrate asked the accused not to say anything as the court had no jurisdiction to hear the case, adjourning the case to July 14 for mention.

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