Dar es Salaam. Lawyers defending journalist Erick Kabendera on Friday August 30, asked the Kisutu Resident Magistrate Court to direct Tanzania Prisons Service to allow their client to seek medical treatment in a government hospital.
The lawyer, Mr Jebra Kambole made the plea on August 30,2019 before the court’s Resident Magistrate, Janeth Mtega, after senior state attorney Wankyo Saimon had told the court that investigations into the case were yet to be completed.
Mr Kambole told the court that on the eve of August 2, 2019 his client, while in remand prison, started feeling sick and that until now he has respiratory problems.
"I went to see him and discovered that one of his legs had paralyzed as he failed to walk for two days and appeared weak. So, as his lawyers and relatives, we don’t know what he is suffering from," Kambole told the court.
He added: Since our client has not undergone a deserved medical checkup, we are asking the court to direct Tanzania Prisons Service to allow him go to any of government hospital for a medical checkup including Muhimbili National Hospital, where he can properly be medically examined," Kambole told the court.
The State Attorney, Mr Wakyo told the court that the issue of sickness would not be disputed by anybody, but, he added, Tanzania Prisons Service should not be directed to take him to a certain hospital for a medical checkup.
"Your court cannot order that he be taken to a certain hospital because he has never made an application for that and was denied.”
“However, the law statutorily stipulates that economic sabotage offences can only be heard by the High Court, so, this court has no jurisdiction of making any decision," Wankyo told the court.
After hearing the arguments of both parties, magistrate Mtega adjourned the case to September 12, 2019 when it will come up for mention.