Rajan Mahtani challenges DPP in forgery case

Rajan Mahtani
Rajan Mahtani

FORMER Finance Bank FBZ chairperson Rajan Mahtani has applied for leave to start judicial review against the forgery charges regarding the share transfer forms of Zambezi Portland Cement Limited (ZPC) into Finsbury Investment Limited.
Dr Mahtani is challenging the decision by the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) on June 1, this year, to prosecute him on two counts of alleged forgery of the share transfer forms of ZPC, the prosecution which was terminated by the DPP on April 30, 2012, on instructions of the Attorney-General.

He contends that the decision to prosecute him is ultra vires as the DPP is bound by the direction given by the Attorney-General.
Dr Mahtani said this in a notice of application for leave to apply for judicial review filed in the Lusaka High Court yesterday.

“Since the applicant is due to enter plea on June 29, 2015, he asks for a stay of the decision and proceedings to prevent this application for judicial review from being rendered moot in view of the fact that the applicant has prayed for orders of certiorari and prohibition,” Dr Mahtani said.
Certiorari is an order issued by a superior court, directing a lower court, tribunal, or other public authority to send the record of a proceeding for review.

He said unless the decision and all proceedings are stayed, there will be nothing to quash and prohibit in the event that he succeeds in his case.
Dr Mahtani said it would be unfair and contrary to public policy to prosecute him when there was an agreement contained in a letter dated March 20, 2012 from the Attorney-General to his lawyers not to probe him.

He is praying for a declaration that the institution and maintenance of his criminal prosecution based on the alleged forgery of share transfer forms of ZPC is an abuse of the court process.
He is also asking for an order of prohibition stopping his prosecution on the counts of alleged forgery of the share transfer forms of ZPC.

Zambia Daily Mail