Malawi court discharge suspects despite being found guilty: ACB worried with sentencing trend

The Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) has expressed concern with sentencing trend that has seen three people, among them two Police officers, being discharged despite being found guilty of corrupt practices and abuse of office, respectively.

ACB's spokeswoman Egrita Mdala: Concerened with lighter sentences

ACB’s spokeswoman Egrita Mdala: Concerened with lighter sentences

This sentencing trend, according to ACB, is against Section 34 of the Corrupt Practices Act, which mandate the courts to slap convicts with twelve year imprisonment with hard.

The Bureau expressed concern after Kasungu Magistrate Court dismissed charges against the accused person despite finding them guilty of  corrupt transactions, abuse of office and theft contrary to Section 24(1) and 25B (1) of the Corrupt Practices Act and Section 278 of the Penal Code.

In 2010, the Bureau received a complaint alleging that police officers in Kasungu solicited and received K10, 000.00 from three farmers in order for the police officers to release subsidized seed which they had confiscated from the farmers.

The ACB instituted investigations into the matter and established  that police officers James Maganga and Ephraim Nasala seized 20 packets of maize seed each weighing 20 kilogrammes from three farmers on pretext that the farmers did not have identity cards.

When the farmers produced the identity cards the police officers demanded K5000.00 from each of the farmers. The farmers managed to pay K10, 000.00, but the Police officers did not return the seed to the farmers.

The Bureau took the two to Kasungu Magistrates Court in 2011 where they were charged with one count of corrupt practices by public officers, abuse of office and theft contrary to Section 24(1) and 25B (1) of the Corrupt Practices Act and Section 278 of the penal code.

And July 15 2015, Kasungu Magistrate’s Court found the two accused guilty of all the charges. However, the court, which applied Section 337 (1) (a) of the Criminal Procedure and Evidence Code, dismissed the charges.

Another case involved a sales clerk at Chamama Smallholder Farmers Fertilizer Revolving Fund Satellite Depot in the same district.

The sale clerk, Tawanda Masiye was arrested after the Bureau established he was selling 50kg FISP fertilizer at K2500 instead of K500 and he was pocketing the difference, according to ACB spokesperson Egrita Ndala.

He was arrested on Febraury 24 this year and later dragged to Kasungu Magistrate Court where was also charged with corrupt transactions by or with private bodies contrary to Section 26(1) of the Corrupt Practices Act.

“On 5th August, 2015, Kasungu Magistrate’s Court found Masiye guilty but did not convict him. The Court applied Section 337 (1) (a) of the Criminal Procedure and Evidence Code and dismissed the charges.

“The Bureau is concerned with this sentencing trend as it is against Section 34 of the Corrupt Practices Act which states that “any person who is guilty of an offence under this Part (Part iv)  of the Corrupt Practices Act shall be liable to imprisonment for a term of twelve years,” said Ndala.

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32 thoughts on “Malawi court discharge suspects despite being found guilty: ACB worried with sentencing trend”

  1. amfumu says:

    Simple,charge those magistrates

  2. panaseed says:

    do not punish people with akward cases instead concetrate on huge cashgate…..bravo

  3. not myname says:

    ACB don’t hastate do your job if you know that there is something unlawful.

  4. Thom Chunga says:

    Malawi is really a corrupt country.

  5. Smadav says:

    Shupiti ACB! Mwasowa ntchito eti! Fokofu!

  6. original gobe says:

    so why dont you simply arrest the magistrates? it’s a no brainer!

  7. Kamuna says:

    Pamene ayimangilira

  8. nkasimunguya chinankasanganye says:

    ACB is now operating in fear as it can not push/ persecute real crimes by big fish or I should say the person who was serious with big cases is the one they killed. Pepani ngati ndikunama koma ndimomwemo ndithu

  9. MANKHAMBIRA says:

    TELL US ABOUT MK 577 BILLION

    OSATI NYENYESWAZI !!

    BWANJI KODI ???

    WE ARE WATCHING !!!

  10. Patriot says:

    MALAWI FOR SALE

  11. Genghis Khan says:

    The real cashgate is the justice system in this country.

  12. Manyaziulibe says:

    Malawians let me tell our judicial system is loot. To prove this let’s wait and see wheather this megistrate will be investigated for giving these judgement. The obvious thing is he got something behind the curtains. Whom should we trust. I cry Malawi

  13. Maulid Kachipanda says:

    Everything is rotten in this country,cases are every where even in churches, senior politicians are the ones in fore front of this,no wonder corrupt cases of most senior politicians are still in courts decades and decades without being judged but when it comes to a common person like my self,u will see that the so-called Human Rights Activisits and ACB come in and become so vocal with minor cases that one wonders where are they when major cases are there in courts rotting,thats it in so-called warm heart of Africa,Malawi.

  14. Madam mdala
    Good evening from nantipwiri
    We lhomwes expect you to deal with mcheka chienje and her deputy expidietely as the issue is straight forward
    Just forget about the minors otherwise we dhall think that ”you know where your bread is buttered.
    Good evening
    Moseliwa

  15. Jackpot says:

    This country just create organization to create employment for relations not to save locals all departments are rotten

  16. Mpiya says:

    I seriously question the courts of Malawi from Supreme Court of appeal to village indabas. We have the worst corrupt people presiding over cases. Shariah Laws basi ilowe

  17. mbuya from nselema says:

    acb ndiye kuti chani?

  18. Soko says:

    First of all these magistrate judges are not educated enough. Second they are part of the problem in Malawi. It should take Malawians to protest. where are CSOs?

  19. Mafikizolo says:

    I will only start to respect the Malawi ACB once Muluzi’s corruption case has been completed . Otherwise, they are just part of the rot that has infested the once Warm Heart of Africa .

  20. anadimba says:

    iwe Ndala nawenso ndiwe wakatangale. Ukumamangisa okhawo alibe abale odziwika kapena amene sali mmboma. Uyambe ndi proffessor za ku housing,kenaka Gertu za ku nac, kenaka Muluzi, mcheka, chiwaya,the list goes on . Mwayambatu kusamba kale lija simunali chonchi.dzikoli ndi lanu .nanga inu wokumangani ndani kuti mukumakondera?ai Mulungu akamanga inu.

  21. trad de villager says:

    ACB ACB ACB, u are just another morally corrupted govt of the day watch dog. why are u busy with petty bribery en abuse of office whilst Dr Muluzi is walking freely on the corridors of Malawi? how about the 92 billion kwacha fraud during Bingu era? Do not fool us, the moment ur director is appointed by a President of the day the moment u are morally corrupt. If u are not satisfied with the sentences why cant/ couldn’t u appeal? u are just a bunch of ingrids who pretend to be doin ur job whilst u are used by the government of the day.

  22. captain says:

    Courts in Malawi are disgrace, there is another corrupt court at matapila, in lumbadzi , police prosecutors can be seen discussing with the magistrate like hw much is the person offering? It happened to me personally when a relative had bn taken for hearing

  23. Judge Joash says:

    Ladies and gentlemen,you want these poor souls to languish in jail just because of a meagre K10,000? No let these bastards steal atleast a million.

  24. chiya says:

    magistrateyu drinks with same policemen and u expect him to send his friends to jail? no ways.

  25. clement says:

    The Kasungu magistrate needs to be investigated. He has shown visible symptoms of bribery. Again, you ACB, don’t sound trumpet on tiny amounts of k10000. Bakili’s corruption case is forever dragging. APM corruptly bought a LL city council house, other cashgate sentences are not detergent at all. And then we don’t know how far the k2m case deposited in Kondowe’s account by that HTD mwenye. So ACB, do not sound more alert on minors

  26. gandulo says:

    I think we no longer have hope and trust in our courts as a nation. Malawi used to be the warm heart of Africa but it seems now it has become the heat of Africa,so hot that life is unbearable. Shame and DOOM to us all.

  27. cs says:

    the root cause of corruption in malawi is poor and miserable salaries. Just because of this poor and miserable salaries corruption is here to stay. For instance checks the perks South Africa Burea of standards staff pockets .Its a lump sum.Thats why you will find that you cant corrupt them.

    1. Wilhelm says:

      Low salary is simply not an excuse for corruption.

      Simply because your salary is low, does that make it ok to solicit bribes and steal and de-fraud the government, honest tax-payers and donors? Of course not!

      It simply perpetuates the vicious circle, where salaries are low there’s corruption so government and companies have less legitimate money to pay better salaries. They have less money for salaries because so much is spent on bribes.

      If you want better salaries and to develop Malawi, stop looking for shortcuts to make quick money. Work with honesty.

      Not only that, government and civil servant salaries are still better off than many Malawians in the private sector, especially small businesses. Thousands of Malawians are suffering in rural villages and in slums.

      The police officer or civil servant, with their secure, full-time government job is complaining about low salaries? Shame.

      Many senior civil servants and ministers receive very generous salaries. And yet they are the ones doing ‘cashgate’.

      Corruption is largely practiced by people of low morals. Don’t give low salaries as an excuse.

  28. Che Ngana says:

    Za Ziii Osanena Za Lutepo Bwanji.Paja Ofesi Yanu Ikamangisa Munthu Ndiwapolice Basi.Wina Ndiuja Munammangisa Chifukwa Cha K1000.

  29. Nabetha says:

    The ACB should have pointed out this when Namathanga was sentenced to 3years only and without her assets forfeited. The issue you are now talking involves only MK 10 000. Where is your common sense mayi Egrita? Why is Namathanga’s assets spared from being forfieted? Why didn’t you blow a trumpet when government made a decision to discontinue with Bakili’s corruption case? Your noise is just a clear indication that ACB is just another corrupt organisation. To hell…

  30. Achimidzimidzi says:

    That judge is corrupt. Investigate him.

  31. Jelbin mk says:

    All governing bodies are rotten, this country is filthy with corruption it needs revamping corruption ranges from the state president to a village headman yes up to a village boy or girl. The country actually needs a total revolution.

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