The state has made its final submissions in a case in which Lenard Kanyama, 40, is accused of defiling and seriously injuring an 11-year-old girl in Chikwawa district in October this year.
Lead state lawyer in the case, Eunice Ndingo told YFM in an interview that they made sure that the submissions be made within the given time frame.
“It has not been easy considering the time factor. As state, we closed our case on Monday and we were only given four days up to Friday to make our final submissions on whether there is a case to answer or not. We had to work round the clock to meet the deadline, finally we are happy to have made our submissions,” she said.
Chikwawa First Grade Magistrate Gladstone Chilundu is expected to make his ruling on December 18 on whether the suspect has a case to answer or not and that once found with a case to answer, the case will immediately go into defence.
According to Ndingo, once found with a case to answer and proceed to be convivted, the state, will make an application that sentencing, be done at the Chief Resident Magistrate Court.
“Issues of rape and defilement are at an alarming increase. One way of arresting the problem, is to make sure that convicts are handed stiffer penalties so once found with a case to answer and convicted, we will apply that the sentencing be done at the CRM for a maximum penalty as a caution to would be offenders,” said Ndingo
Meanwhile, the Women Caucus of Parliament in the country, has gone into talks with the Ministry of Justice and Constitution Affairs and the Law Commission to see if there may be revision of some laws on rape and defilement.
Chairperson for the caucus, Lonnie Phiri said this in an interview with YFM as Malawi and the global community has officially closed the 16 days of activism against gender based violence, saying imposing stiffer penalties to the convicts may play a role in calling the tendency to an end.
Phiri, said as women caucus, they would propose for a 30 year jail term as a minimum sentence so as to deter the-would be offenders.
For the past nine months, the country has recorded over 2000 defilement and rape case with victims as young as five months.
The country’s penal code allows the courts to give a maximum of a life sentence to defilement convicts.