Judicial corruption in Malawi ‘a present danger’, says Chief Justice – Malawi Nyasa Times – Malawi breaking news in Malawi

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Chief Justice Andrew Nyirenda said on Friday that corruption has become “a present danger”  that can easily overshadow the integrity of  the country’s Judiciary.

Chief Justice Nyirenda  (L) shares a lighter moment with Joyce Banda and her husband

Sherry party: Bribery on the bench cause for concern

Nyirenda was speaking in Blantyre during Sherry party – a celebration marking the opening of the Judiciary’s legal year.

He confessed that just as it is with every other sector, corruption exists in the Judiciary ,which has recently been tarnished with allegations of judge shopping.

Nyirenda said they can’t bury their heads in the sand pretending that the Judiciary do not have incidents of corruption, saying that would be “foolhardy” .

“We really cannot sit back and think nothing is happening at the institution,” said Nyirenda.

The Chief Justice added:“Surely, we must be concerned about corruption in the Judiciary. We must acknowledge that corruption has become a present danger that can easily overshadow the integrity of our Judiciary.”

His comments comes after Lilongwe-based High Court Judge Charles Mkandawire recently admitted that corruption exists in the Judiciary.

“We in the Malawi Judiciary have accepted that corruption does exist in the Judiciary. We do not want to leave in a fools’ paradise where we become so defensive about judicial corruption,” he said in published reports.

Mkandawire said it it  is because of this realisation that the The Chief Justice had decided to establish the Judicial Integrity Committee chaired by a High Court judge.

“This committee does sensitise judicial officers and staff on the evils of corruption in the judiciary. It investigates complaints of corruption in the judiciary and makes recommendations to the Judicial Service Commission which may even lead to prosecution,” he said.

During the Sherry party, Minister of Justice and Constitutional Affairs Samuel Tembenu urged the Judiciary to seriously look at the issue of corruption.

On her part, Malawi Law Society (MLS) vice-president Tadala Chinkwezule said it is “disheartening’’  to note that corruption is “rampant” in courts, saying it  “erodes the confidence that citizens have in the judicial system.”

The  event also graced by former president Joyce Banda who accompanied her husband , tretired Chief Justices Richard Banda, who was honoured by the Judiciariary together with Leonard Unyolo, the late Friday Makuta and the late Justice Lewis Chatsika, by naming some of its court sessions.
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