High Court Registrar at Lilongwe Registry Antony Kapachiswe Thursday dismissed an application by former president Peter Mutharika and former chief secretary to the government Lloyd Muhara to review the K69.5 million legal costs bill that the High Court imposed on the two.
It is the second time this year for Kapachiswe to reject applications from the two as the court, in April, dismissed Mutharika and Muhara’s request for it to suspend enforcement of the K69. 5 million bill pending review.
However, this time, the court has also slapped the two with K2.5 million in legal costs.
Mutharika and Muhara were found guilty of interfering with Judiciary operations at the time they ordered Chief Justice Andrew Nyirenda and Justice of Appeal Edward Twea—who retired last week—to go on forced leave.
One of the defence lawyers Khumbo Soko confirmed the development.
“I can confirm that the application by former president Peter Mutharika and Muhara for review has been dismissed with costs. They have to pay an extra K2.5 million in costs,” Soko said.
Mutharika and Muhara have been ordered to `pay the K2.5 million within 30 days.
When Mutharika and Muhara decided to send the two justices on forced retirement in 2019, Malawi Law Society, Human Rights Defenders Coalition and Association of Magistrates in Malawi challenged the decision in court.
They asked the court to have the two personally pay the costs of the case after they lost the case. The two settled the legal fees in two instalments of K47,437,125,11 and K22,070,335.89.
In April, Mutharika and Muhara argued that proceeding with enforcement of the costs as assessed would create confusion on both parties on the basis that, if the costs were reduced, other parties to the case would have trouble refunding the money.