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6 lawyers face prosecution

Malawi Law Society submits names to DPP

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Steven Kayuni

The Malawi Law Society (MLS) has submitted to the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) six names of lawyers it wants the DPP to institute criminal proceedings against for alleged embezzlement of clients’ money and forgery

The law society has recommended criminal charges against the lawyers.

This comes a few days after Attorney General Thabo Chakaka Nyirenda indicated that he was ready to submit to the court another list of lawyers that could face disbarment if the court finds that they contravened ethics.

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Chakaka Nyirenda said he would apply for their disbarment soon.

“I will apply for their disbarment. There are 12 of them but office of the Director of Public Prosecutions is going to prosecute the lawyers per the recommendation of the disciplinary committee of the Malawi Law Society,” he said.

DPP Steve Kayuni confirmed that he had received the submission.

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“I can confirm to have received the submission,” Kayuni said

When contacted, MLS President Patrick Mpaka made reference to the society’s report, which was published in March 2021.

According to the report, MLS’s independent committee penalised at least 22 legal practitioners for various offences and misconduct.

Six lawyers were earmarked for removal from the legal profession for good while five of them risked facing jail terms after a recommendation from the independent committee that they be prosecuted for the act of criminality.

The MLS disciplinary committee was established by the Legal Education and Legal Practitioners Act, under Section 90, and has powers to inquire into the conduct of legal practitioners, at the request of the High Court, on complaints made by the citizenry.

Once a lawyer is suspended, the procedure is that MLS is supposed to publish the decision in the gazette and in two newspapers with the widest circulation.

Last week, Chief Justice (CJ) Rizine Mzikamanda disbarred lawyer Maxwell Tembo for improper conduct following an application by the AG.

Tembo was found wanting after he embezzled K7 million meant for clients from 2015.

The CJ has further ordered Tembo to refund the money, with interest.

He is also expected to hear three applications of the same nature against lawyers Nicely Msowoya, Julius Nyambo and Richard Katsichi.

Earlier this month, MLS punished 22 legal practitioners for various offences.

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