Controversial preacher Paul Mackenzie and 28 co-suspects in the Shakahola cult deaths will remain in custody for another month awaiting a ruling on the State’s application seeking to have them held for six more months.
In the application, assistant Director of Public prosecutions Jami Yamina has listed what he says are compelling reasons for detention pending completion of investigations arguing that detention is the least restrictive measure pending completion of investigations and charges as the accused pose a suicide risk.
According to the prosecution, the terrorism laws allow for up to 360 days of lawful detention pending completion of investigations and that parliament. In its wisdom, it extended the days from 90 days to 360 days to accommodate complex cases.
“The terrorism laws allow for up to 360 days of lawful detention pending completion of investigations and that parliament, in its wisdom, extended the days from 90 days to 360 days to accommodate complex cases,” the DPP argues.
Jami also opposed the release of six out of 29 Shakahola suspects as recommended in the social inquiry reports conducted by the Probation and Aftercare Services department.
He told Hon. Shikakanda that the suspects are required to undergo deradicalization before being reintegrated into the society and their family members have not provided explanations as to how the six will not harm themselves.
Over 420 bodies of Mackenzie’s doomsday cult, where followers were urged to starve themselves to death in order to ‘meet Jesus’ have been exhumed.