The High Court in Zomba has acquitted former Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry Ellock Maotcha Banda of abducting a 17-year-old school girl.
He was sentenced to six years imprisonment with hard labour on September 18, 2015 for abducting a student at Chinamwali Girls Private School in Zomba.
Maotcha Banda has already served three years at Zomba Maximum Prison.
Lawyer representing Maotcha Banda, Timothy Chirwa said among others, his appeal was based on the fact that a child is someone below the age of 16.
“If you followed the reading of the ruling, you will recall that the court said the child is considered to be 16 years below when is a victim and considered to be 17 when is an offender so in this case, the victim was 17 years old by the time of the arrest of my client, so she was not a minor,” said Chirwa.
Maotcha Banda was Member of Parliament for Machinga Central between 2004 and 2009 and was appointed deputy minister of Trade and Industry during that period.