By Chisomo Phiri
The High Court in Mzuzu has on Thursday November 30,2023 adjourned to January 30,2023 a manslaughter and aggravated human trafficking case involving Tadikira Mafubza, a stepson to Former President Peter Mutharika and seven others.
The adjournment follows an application by the state.
On Thursday, the state managed to bring one witness, Tryness Simwaka, a fuel attendant who knew Sam Navaya the seventh accused as a driver and was in a relationship with him.
The witness told the court that she was asked to accompany Navaya to Karonga on October 11, 2022.
At night while chatting with her boyfriend she overheard Navaya’s friends informing him via a phone call that there was a business to be executed.
Later, she met Navaya along M1 Road using a Sienta vehicle and was in the company of his assistant.
Simwaka said they started off to Karonga and that as they were approaching Chilumba, they stopped at some place and while there she heard footsteps from a van which was being driven by Sam.
“I saw people being offloaded from the van. Later they took another road to bypass the roadblock and after passing Chilumba Roadblock the people got back into the van,” said Simwaka.
The witness said along the route to Mzuzu, the van that was following the Sienta branched off into another short-cut road to Mzimba.
Simwaka narrated that the van got into a forest in Mzimba where the people in the Sienta opened it and started to offload the people who looked tall but weak.
Simwaka also said she and the driver were later dismissed by someone from the Sienta vehicle and that they left with unanswered questions as to what was happening.
Tadikira Mafubza is answering twelve counts of manslaughter and aggravated human trafficking alongside Aubrey Dukes, Arnold Mwakiyela, Boniface Ngulube, Duncan Kalulu, David Luhanga, Thomas Kazembe, and Samuel Navaya.
The case is in connection to the 30 bodies of suspected Ethiopian nationals discovered in a mass grave inside Mtangatanga Forest Reserve in Mzimba district last year.