5 August 2017

Tanzania: Manji Hits Another Snag in Bail Application

Photo: Iddy Mwema/Daily News
Dar es Salaam based businessman Yusuph Manji.

THE Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) has filed three grounds of objection, seeking dismissal of bail application lodged by prominent businessman, Yusufali Manji, who is charged with seven economic and national security counts, relating to military uniform fabrics worth over 200m/-.

Judge Isaya Arufani was yesterday scheduled to hear such grounds of objection at the High Court in Dar es Salaam, but the session was adjourned to August 7, because he was out of the office for other official matters.

Deputy Registrar Mustafa Siani adjourned the session on behalf of the judge. Two State Attorneys, Paul Kadushi and Simon Wankyo, appeared for the DPP, while Manji was represented by a team of advocates comprising Alex Mgongolwa, Mpaya Kamara, Hudson Ndusyepo and Seni Malimi.

In the grounds of preliminary objections, the DPP alleges that the court has no jurisdiction to entertain the application, saying the court has not been properly moved and that the affidavit by Manji in support of the application is incurably defective.

The prosecution presented a certificate by the DPP seeking to deny bail to the accused person when he was first arraigned before the Kisutu Resident Magistrate's Court in the city on July 5, this year, stating that interests of the public and national security would be at stake if the accused would be bailed out.

In his application for bail, therefore, Manji is asking the court to order that the certificate filed by the DPP ostensibly to bar the court from granting him bail should be 'strike out' on a number of reasons.

Among the reasons, he stated, the certificate suffers fatally and incurably from duplicity in that one certificate has been filed under two distinct and separate laws and for distinct and separate offences charged under two separate laws.

The laws are the National Security Act and the Economic and Organized Crimes Control Act. Manji stated that the certificate does not state the details of the prejudice safety and interests to the Republic if bail is granted to him, thereby ousting the court's jurisdiction in a blanket manner.

He states that the certificate has not been issued under oath contrary to the law relating to certification, and that the said certificate has not been filed in a court without jurisdiction to hear and determine issues relating to bail in the case and, hence fatally defective.

In the case, Manji (41) is charged alongside three officials with Quality Group, Deogratius Kisinda (28), the Human Resources and Administrative Officer, Abdallah Sangey (46), Store Keeper and Thobias Fwele (43), Assistant Store Keeper.

It is alleged that on June 30, this year at Chang'ombe A area in Temeke district, jointly and together, all accused persons were found by a police officer in possession of 35 bundles of fabric used for uniforms of the Tanzania People's Defence Forces (TPDF), valued at 192.5m/-, which were unlawfully acquired.

Manji and his co-accused persons are also charged with a similar count of being found with eight bundles of the same materials valued at 44m/-, allegedly committed on July 1, this year, at Chang'ombe A area in Temeke district in the city of Dar es Salaam.

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