Court convicts ESCOM pole axe-man – Capital Radio Malawi
23 April, 2024

The Senior Resident Magistrate court in Lilongwe, has convicted and sentenced a 26-year-old man to three years and four months imprisonment for vandalism of ESCOM property.

The convict, Never Chimphanje, was caught in Dzalanyama Forest Reserve cutting down ESCOM poles using an axe.

The court, through state prosecutor Richard Kandeya, heard that Chimphanje committed the offence on 3 March 2023 at Kaweche Village in Traditional Authority Masumbankhunda in Lilongwe.

When he appeared before the court, Chimphanje admitted to have taken down 3 electricity poles.

In mitigation, Chimphanje through his interpreter, asked for forgiveness for his conduct and prayed to the court for leniency when passing its sentence.

During submission, the state through Kandeya asked the court to give the convict a hefty punishment citing the seriousness of the offence.

Kandeya also said that vandalism of ESCOM equipment in Lilongwe has reached a concerning level as it is affecting economic development in communities as well as draining government resources.

Passing his sentence, Senior Resident Magistrate Wanangwa Nyirenda, concurred with the state arguing that the convict’s behavior is retrogressive, hence the need for custodial punishment.

Nyirenda then went on to sentence Chimphanje to 40 months imprisonment with hard labour to serve as a deterrent to other would-be offenders.

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