Today, a Magistrate ordered the South African government to pay Malawi-based Prophet Shepherd Bushiri and his wife, Prophetess Mary Bushiri.
The payment, to be made to Bushiri’s lawyers, must be completed before December 11, when the ongoing extradition case reconvenes for South Africa to present its witnesses.
In her ruling, following South Africa’s application to adjourn the case due to logistical challenges, Magistrate Madalitso Chimwaza sharply criticised South Africa’s handling of the proceedings.
This decision came after a previous incident in court where the South African state failed to testify once again, requesting an adjournment citing uncontrolled logistical circumstances as the reason.
Bushiri’s lawyer, Wapona Kita, objected to the adjournment application, pointing out that the State had not provided substantial reasons to warrant it, apart from vague claims of logistical challenges.
Kita questioned the State’s change in position, as they had previously paraded a witness and were ready to testify. Additionally, he challenged the State’s assertion of logistical challenges when the South African Director of Public Prosecutions was present in court during the proceedings. Kita has urged the court to dismiss the case.
South Africa has been ordered to pay Shepherd Bushiri K560,000 (about seven thousand rand) in costs for causing delays in the ongoing extradition case.