State persuades court to refuse Morupisi withdrawal

Carter Morupisi. PHATSIMO KAPENG
Carter Morupisi. PHATSIMO KAPENG

The Directorate of Public Prosecutions (DPP) has implored the Court of Appeal not to entertain Carter Morupisi’s application for permission to withdraw his appeal.

The State through DPP states the former Permanent Secretary to the President, who is now Botswana Patriotic Front (BPF) chairperson, has been closed out by the same court when the bench ruled that the appeal continue. DPP’s argument comes after Morupisi attempted to withdraw his appeal without having sought leave first from the court. On June 19, 2024, the bench of Court President, Justice Tebogo Tau, Justices Singh Walia and Baaitse Nkabinde struck out Morupisi’s application for withdrawal of appeal for failing to follow court rules. The ruling in part noted that "the appeal shall proceed on the grounds as filed" and this is where DPP’s argument lies that the court has already decided that the appeal shall proceed.

Standing for the prosecution, Kentse Molome explained that when the court made the finding that the appeal would proceed they ultimately closed the door for Morupisi to make remedial measures. “Morupisi’s application for leave shouldn't stand as the court has already decided on the matter and also that Morupisi was given many chances to remedy the situation must he fail to do so,” she told the court. On the other point, Molome accused Morupisi of abusing the court process because she was quick to accept defeat on the argument after the court cautioned her about making such allegations. Justice Walia, in response to Molome’s accusations, had mentioned to her that accusing someone of abusing the court process is a serious allegation. “Making such allegations is grave, especially when that person believes they are simply exercising their legal right. “Keep in mind that when an application is struck out there are corrective measures that can be applied and it is different from a dismissal, remember that,” Walia said. Both justices, Walia and Nkabinde, had reminded the State that when an application is struck out, it gives the litigant a chance to take remedial measures to ensure compliance with the rules and that was basically what Morupisi was doing.

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