The Malawi Law Society (MLS) has joined other institutions in demanding for transparency on reports of dubious transactions made during procurement of maize from Zambia.
The development comes at a time political parties and Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) have expressed their anger on Admarc and minister of agriculture, irrigation and water development following reports of possible fraud during the procurement of maize.
In a statement signed by MLS president John Suzi Banda made available to Malawi24, the law society has vowed to follow the matter with keen interest to ensure that necessary action is taken.
MLS has also condemned Admarc for blocking freedom of expression by obtaining an injunction restraining Blantyre Newspapers Limited from publishing articles on the maize scam.
“The Society is aware of the lawsuit commenced at High Court of Malawi, Principal Registry by ADMARC Limited and its Chief Executive Officer, Foster Mulumbe, against Blantyre Newspapers Limited and others regarding the publication of the within matter.
“The Society has resolved to apply to the High Court to join the matter as amicus curiae [‘friend of the court’] to offer its insights into the principles of press freedom, freedom of expression generally and their indispensability as far as matters of national interest are concerned,” reads part of the statement.
MLS further called for the need for law enforcement agencies that are both credible and independent to investigate the maize scam, arguing that matters giving rise to suspicion of criminal impropriety should be pursued by appropriate law enforcement agencies that have not only the legal wherewithal to undertake such investigations but also the relevant technical expertise.
The Malawi, Zambia maize deal has since sparked controversy with CSOs demanding suspension of Admarc boss Mulumbe and resignation of agriculture minister George Chaponda.
However, President Peter Mutharika has claimed that he will not take action until a report is presented to his office by a Commission of Inquiry.