Convicted lawyer Raphael Kasambara is missing on the list of Malawi Law Society (MLS) licensed legal practitioners but his close associates have brushed off claims that his not being included on the list is because of his conviction, saying he did not apply for membership renewal.
The former Justice Minister is not among the 377 licensed lawyers as at August 31, 2016.
Kasambara’s associate, a legal practitioner who refused to be named, said “it is nothing to do with his arrest and subsequent conviction and imprisonment.”
According to the associate “even if it were that conviction automatically translated to ‘disbarment’ he [Kasambara] would have been accepted as he was still innocent when the licensing process was being done.”
He said qualification to obtain a license are that one should be admitted to the bar, and that they must have paid subscription fee to MLS.
Kasambara is a convicted criminal by “miscarriage of justice” as he claimed, who, as a lawyer, served as the Minister of Justice and Attorney General since April 2012.
On August 30 2016, he was given a 13 year jail term for conspiracy to murder Paul Mphwiyo – a former budget director – in a crime believed to be linked to a multi-million dollar corruption ring popularly known as cashgate.
He is appealing both the conviction and sentence at the Supreme Court of Malawi.