Pastor Mackenzie’s Lawyer Fails to Attend Court Mention

March 28, 2024

On Wednesday, Shanzu Law Court was forced to adjourn a case in which Shakahola massacre key suspect Paul Mackenzie and 94 others were charged with five terrorism-related counts.

The court postponed that matter after Mackenzie’s lawyer, Wycliffe Makasembo, failed to appear in court to represent him and his co-accused followers.

Principal Magistrate Hon. Leah Juma had summoned the officer in charge of Shimo la Tewa Maximum Security prison and the investigating officer to appear in court and explain Mackenzie’s grievances.

The mastermind behind the Shakahola massacre accused the prison authority of discrimination, complaining that he had been separated from his co-accused.

Yesterday, Senior Prosecution Counsel Peris Ogega informed Magistrate Juma that they were unaware of the defense counsel’s absence and that they were ready to proceed with the matter.

However, Mackenzie and his co-accused prayed to the court to adjourn the mention of the matter until their lawyer is available.

In her ruling, Hon. Juma stated that the accused face grave offenses, and Article 50 of the constitution requires an accused person to be represented by counsel.

She added that proceeding with the matter without their legal representation would constitute a violation of Mackenzie and his co-accused’s fundamental rights.

The court will issue further directions on April 3, 2024.

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