- Feb 11, 2007
SOURCE: GuardianState set to challenge Mtikila in Dito`s case
By Rosemary Mirondo
The State intends to raise a preliminary objection against a petition recently lodged by Rev Christopher Mtikila, who wants the High Court to restore a murder charge against former Tabora regional commissioner Ukiwaona Ditopile Mzuzuri.
Mzuzuri was originally charged with murder but the charge was later commuted to manslaughter.
Mtikila was not impressed by the Director of Public Prosecutions` (DPP) decision and lodged the present petition in the court.
Ditopile is alleged to have shot dead Dar es Salaam commuter bus driver Hassan Mbonde last year.
The State has expressed its intention through its chief legal advisor, the Attorney General, in a reply to the petition lodged last week.
In the notice of preliminary objection, the State intends to raise several points of law.
They include the contention that the petition is misconceived, embarrassing and incompetent for failure to properly move the court and to disclose or cite any specific provision of the Tanzanian Constitution which has been infringed or violated in preferring the charge of manslaughter against Mzuzuri.
The State also intends to argue that the petition is bad in law because it has been made in flagrant violation of the provisions of Section 4, 5 and 6 of the Basic Rights and Duties Enforcement Act, Cap.3 R.E 2002.
It further intends to argue that the prayers contained therein are constitutionally not tenable and that the petition contravenes Article 13 (6) (b) of the Union Constitution.
The State is also of the view that the petition in question is bad in law for being prejudicial to the prosecution process and for being supported by affidavits drawn by unqualified person, contrary to the Advocates Act.
In the circumstances, the Attorney General intends to beg the court to strike out the petition with costs and grant any other relief it may deem fit.
The State says the petitioner`s claims that Mzuzuri was unlawfully granted bail and that there was an alteration of a charge are baseless.
It similarly challenges the assertion that the alteration of the murder charge to manslaughter deliberately did away with the evidence of Thomas Mwita, Masasi Lwenge, Yona Mwenge and Edward Gervas.
The State is further of the view that Mzuzuri was never accorded a favour, discriminatory treatment or impunity.
The respondent will further contend that, for the better administration of criminal justice, the DPP has exclusive mandate and prerogative based on the kind and value of evidence available to him to determine an appropriate charge to be preferred against any suspect.
The State will further argue that the charge of manslaughter was never intended to free the accused but was based on the value of the evidence available.
It is also set to deny the allegation that the DPP was involved in manipulations of the preliminary inquiry.