Judiciary strike stalls Lutepo’s cashgate case in Zomba

The protesters hang posters at the High Court in Zomba.

The protesters hang posters at the High Court in Zomba.

Poster  at High Court gates in Zomba

Poster at High Court gates in Zomba

Court proceedings on a cashgate case involving businessperson Oswald Lutepo failed to resume at the High Court in Zomba following the Judiciary support staff strike currently taking place in the country.

Lutepo is being accused of theft and laundering K2.1 billion believed to have been obtained in the plunder of government funds popularly referred to as Cashgate.

People who came to witness the case in the morning were greeted with posters which the Judiciary protesters hanged on the gates at the High Court.

The Judiciary staff wants government to effect their salary increment just as that of their counterparts in the civil service.

According to Linley Hebert, a spokesperson for the striking workers,  the  strike is a result of the government’s failure to honor a 2012 agreement.

“In October [this year], the government reviewed the salaries of the civil servants, but we were not included in that revision. Yet in 2012, we had an agreement that each time they are revising the salaries of the civil servants, [they will be increasing our salaries as well].  So, [after adhering to the agreement in 2013], we are surprised to see that this time we are left out,” he said.

Ministry of Finance spokesperson Nations Msowoya told a local radio station it is hard for the government to meet the workers’ demand due to financial constraints  following a donor aid freeze against Malawi’s government.

Msowoya said “at the prevailing economic circumstances and budgetary constraints will make a little bit difficult for the treasury to bow down to the demands [of judiciary support staff].”

It is now the second week since the strike started and discussions with government have remained inconclusive.

Human rights campaigners and legal experts say the strike is contributing to human rights violations.

“There are those people who have to be taken to court within 48 hours,” noted lawyer George Kadzipatike who works in a private practice in the northern city of Mzuzu.

“We cannot make application for them to be granted bail.  There are those people who do not want to live with their partners, they would like the court to decree that they be divorced, we cannot file any petition through the courts.”

The strike has paralysed the justice delivery system as suspects continue to remain in police and prison cells awaiting court trial.

Malawi police spokesperson Rhoda Manjolo said the only option they have is “giving police bail to those with minor offenses.”

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Ambolozio
Guest

U said w can survive without aid so u nd 4 wat? First u hv 2 brainstorm this iz very poorest country u can c ather pipo they failling to provide their basic needs, zauchitsilu.

Mbakwazulu
Guest

Inu a makhoti musandilankhulitse pambali pakati ndikupawona ayi. Kodi siinu nomwe munathandiza chitsilu chinzanucho kuti chikhale pampando pobela mavoti ndi tiziletso tanu mumapeleka tija. Lero zakupwetekani? Kapena munagwilizana ndi galu wanuyo kuti mukamuthandiza kubela adzakuwonjezelani malipilo? mulira simunathe, uku ndikuyamba chabe. Moya uwakhaulitse amenewo adziwedi kuti moya nayoso ndi Lawyer.

Onasiwelo
Guest

If he failed to solve the University of Malawi feud when he was minister of education do you think he gives it a dam for you support staff at the judiciary he does care at all, after all you are the ones who put him on the seat though your stupid injunctions and what ever means you used go and ask stupid Mbendela and his butch of staff and the attorney general. This is the begging wait for more mulira zenizeni.

kagonanitu
Guest

Kasi MP waku Zomba Ngwa PP? Ndimo tikutondekera kunozga vinthu chifukwa tiwona munthu pa maso mumalo mwakuwo suzgo na kunozga suzgo ilo kuti vinthu viyendenge makola mu charu.

FREDO MANONDO
Guest

peter solve it, should i remind you than you are also a lawyerr, solve for the serve of our profession

osuma
Guest

u guys although ur demand is real genuine but posters u posted at Zomba it does made good to the head of state. Imfa ikamabwera simapanga odi oti inu mukuona kuti mukamalemba mau a mwano ndiye kuti boma likupatseni madandu anuwo! Perekani ulemu kwa mtsogoleri wa dziko. Inu amene mwalemba poster imeneyo dziwani moto umapita kwatsala tchire ndiye nchoncho pelekani madanduwo mwa ulemu.

bogodo
Guest

eeish you have murdered the queens language man

Nalimata
Guest

@ Suma

You applauded this kind of thing during JB’s time. So what now. Get life and stay with it.

moto mwikho
Guest

This is pure anarchy and the posters confirm it. I did not know we have such uncouth people in the judicial service.

Chejumo
Guest

PLZ CAN SOMEONE SCHOOL ME ARE JUDICIARY SUPPORT STAFF NOT REGARDED AS ONE OF THE ARM OF GOVERNMENT, WHATS HAPPENING,,,,,,,,,,,””””’>>>>>>>><<<<<<<<?????????

nyini ya mphevu
Guest

ameneyu aone cardiac basi!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! with all this nonsence, people from the south will be most sufferers!!!!!!!!!!!!, njala imayamba kumwera, mankhwala amayamba kusowa kumwera, china chilichonse choipa chimayamba kumwera!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! msiye kuika mbuzi pampando!!!!!!!!!!!!!! mwamva anguru inu!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

KING SOLOMONS WISDOM
Guest
MY TAKE ON THIS IS DAT DE GOVT DOES THIS ON PURPOSE-THEY DO NOT WANT SPEEDY JUSTICE COZ THE VERY PEOPLE WE EMPLOYD AS LEADERS ARE CONECTED TO MANY CASES. I CONSIDER ANYONE WORKIN 4 GOVT AS CIVIL SERVANT.THIS IS DISCRIMINATION.WHY WERE TEACHERS SALARIES INCREASED? ANSWER IS COZ THEY TOOK PART IN VOTE RIGGING.ASK MACS MBENDERA SC.THE TEACHERS HAD PRODUCED FAKE ADDITIONS ON PURPOSE COZ HAD BEEN PROMISED PAY RISES.BUT NOW THERE IS NO MONEY EVEN TO PAY THE VERY TEACHERS WHO HAD BEEN CHEATED.TEACHERS MUST NOT BE EASILY CHEATED.FINALLY I SIMPASIZ & PLEAD WITH JUDCIAL STAFF.BUT PLS GO BACK… Read more »
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