Malawians ask ACB to arrest midnight magistrate

…HRDC demands Law Society to investigate conduct of lawyers

Malawians have demanded the arrest of magistrate Ben Chitsakamile who released bribery suspect Thomson Mpinganjira just after midnight on Thursday.

People on social media have argued that the magistrate’s conduct was illegal saying he assisted Mpinganjira to escape from lawful custody.

“In a normal society, if a magistrate issued an illegal order to the cops, the cops would have disobeyed it and arrested him too,” said Sean Kampondeni.

Social commentator Onjezani Kenani concurred saying:  The magistrate should be arrested.”

FDH boss Mpinganjira who was arrested on Wednesday was expected to spend the night at Blantyre Police but was released at around midnight after Chitsakamile issued an order cancelling a warrant of arrest earlier obtained by the Anti-Corruption Bureau.

Reacting to the issue, the Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC) said what happened undermined the justice system.

“It is clear that while we have an extraordinary group of dedicated judiciary officers doing their level best, there are rotten, corrupt, elements who will do anything to undermine the rule of law. They must be named and shamed,” said the grouping in a statement signed by Chairperson Timothy Mtambo and his deputy Gift Trapence.

HRDC has also demanded the Judicial Service Commission to investigate the Magistrate who issued the illegal order and his conduct as a judiciary officer

According to the HRDC, Malawi Law Society should initiate an inquiry into the conduct of the lawyers involved in the Zomba Midnight Fiasco and also investigate

“The magistrate’s previous cases he has had with clients when he was a practicing Lawyer.

“The Judiciary should put measures designed to immediately stop the practice of judge shopping,” the grouping said.

 

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One Comment

  1. FDH should be investigated on how they won a case of defamation filed by former MSB employees when there was over whelming evidence to the contrary.

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