Driver fined K2.4M over traffic offences

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Sergeant Tionge Kayenda

The First Grade Magistrate’s Court sitting at Liwonde has convicted and sentenced a 38-year-old driver, Taibu Mkwinda, to pay a fine of K2,430,000.00 of which K2,000,000.00 will be paid to the deceased family after being found guilty for the offence of causing death due to reckless driving, motor vehicle without licence and insurance.

Deputy Public Relations Officer of Police for Eastern Eastern Region, Sergeant Tionge Kayenda, has confirmed the conviction of Mkwinda.

Sergeant Kayenda said that the court, through Eastern Region Police prosecutor Sub Inspector Luke Lazaro, heard that, on May 17, 2024, Mkwinda was driving a motor vehicle registration number BZ 6864 Isuzu ERF Lorry from the direction of Liwonde heading Msanama with one passenger on board.

She further said that upon arrival at the Machinga area due to overspeeding, he lost control of the motor vehicle and hit a male pedal cyclist Anafi Afala who carried a female pillion passenger Joyce James who was having a 3-year-old child on her back.

Following the impact, the pillion passenger Joyce James sustained abdominal cut wounds and was taken to Mlomba Health Centre where she was pronounced dead the pedal cyclist and the baby sustained head injuries and were referred to Machinga District Hospital.

Upon receipt of the accident report, Liwonde Traffic Police visited the scene and later arrested Mkwinda on allegations that he contributed to the cause of the accident by driving a motor vehicle at a high speed and as well for driving without a driving licence and certificate of insurance.

Appearing before the court, Mkwinda pleaded guilty to all three counts levelled against him and the court found him guilty too.

In his submission, state prosecutor Inspector Lazaro asked the court for a stiffer punishment saying the offence was serious for it involved the life of a person, and as well the driver was incompetent for driving without necessary documents which would have made it difficult for the deceased family to get a compensation.

In mitigation, Mkwinda asked the court to soften his punishment saying he has already spent a week in prison waiting for court proceedings.

Passing sentence, First Grade Magistrate Maxwell Boaz concurred with the state and added that cases of that nature are rampant. He, therefore, sentenced Mkwinda to pay a total fine of K430,000.00 and ordered him to pay a sum of K2,000,000.00 to the deceased family as compensation.

Mkwinda hails from Kaukule Village in the area of Traditional Authority Mposa in Machinga District.

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