Malawi Law Society ponders on Kasambara:  Judge Mtambo ‘maliciously witholding’ judgement?

Malawi Law Society (MLS) is waiting to get hold of the  judgement  by High Court judge Micheal Mtambo which he delivered last month convicting  former justice minister Ralph Kasambara, before  making a decision to struck off Kasambara from the list of accredited lawyers to practice.

 Kasambara hinted at the possibility of appealing against the verdict,

Kasambara hinted at the possibility of appealing against the verdict

Judge Mtambo convicted Kasambara alongside his two co-accused—Pika Manondo and Macdonald Kumwembe—on the charge of conspiracy to murder former Ministry of Finance budget director Paul Mphwiyo.

Mtambo also found Manondo, a businessperson and Kumwembe, a former Malawi Defence Force (MDF) soldier, guilty of attempted murder in relation to Mphwiyo’s shooting on September 13 2013 outside the gate of his Area 43 residence in Lilongwe.

But the law society president  John Suzi Banda said the body wants to peruse through the written judgement before it makes its decision.

The judgement which is supposed to be a public docement is not yet in the public domain.

In other high profile cases, High Court such as the convicton of cashgate kingpin Oswald Lutepo, the  judge gave reporters the same day he delivered it as well as soft copy was circulated the same day.

But in the Mphwiyo shooting case, that was televised, the Judge  says is writing  the judgement.

“One wonders what the judge was reading then. If it was in long hand (which is very doubtful as the judge had highlighted printers papers) surely can it take more than a day to type and edit a judgement that was read for less than an hour and half,” said one lawyer familiar with circulation of judgement.

He said the convicts need to access the Mtambo judgement so that they can commence appeal process and prepare skeletal arguments that goes with notice of appeal.

“The right to speedy trial includes a right to receivie written judgement timely,” he said.

Judiciary sources says Judge Mtambo is now struggling to write  a sound judgement that will stand the test of proving a case beyond reasonable doubt.

Others suggest Judge Mtambo is “maliciously withholding” the judgement so as to punish the convicts by delaying their commening appeal process.

But law society president said they don’t want “piecemeal reactions” until they see the judgement.

Judge Mtambo set August 22 as the date for hearing of submissions of mitigation factors before it can pass jail sentences.

But legal critics queried Mtmbao: “ When are you receiving evidence for sentencing purposes as required by section 321J of Criminal Procedure and Evidence code, Cap. 8:01.”

Kasambara claimed after being convicted that the trial was “staged” and that Judge Mtambo was “comprimosed”.

Under the Penal Code, the offence of attempted murder carries a maximum sentence of life imprisonment whereas conspiracy to commit murder attracts a maximum jail term of 14 years.

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Joel Nyirongo

why is Malawi Law Society interested in this case since they said that Kasambara is not a member?They already released a list of lawyers which excluded Kasambara, so what are you upto?

Will Never Go Back To Nyasaland
Will Never Go Back To Nyasaland

So all our prominent politicians from Nkhata Bay will end the same difficult way. Orton Chirwa, Aleke Banda and now Ralph Kasambara. This hurts so bad. I hope you our colleagues from other parts of the country know this. We are also Malawians.

kenneth saiba ngwali

Inu musiyeni Mtambo ndi munthu ophunzira komanso ozindikila odziwa bwino ntchito yake dnt discredit judge Mtambo plz no u r Law society President I dnt leave Mtambo alone bcz u r not a judge oky do you to tell Malawians that Ralph Kasambala he cannot be arrested?Who is Ralph? Don’t take us as fools plz we r all Educated

Non Aligned Movement
To all my people of Tonga descent, please refrain from Malawian politics. It is not for us. Let’s just work hard in our professions and careers. Orton Chirwa struggled to have Kamuzu accepted nationally and and to eventually cease power from the colonialists. But later the same Kamuzu jailed Orton on frivolous charges. Then came Aleke, who was the brain behind Muluzi’s election in 1994. But later dumped like a used plastic shopping bag. Now as if in a dream Mayi Joyce Banda had nobody to lean on when the midnight owls wanted to snatch power from her except for… Read more »
Tadala Themba

If the judgement was hastly written and he is refining it , so was this document- who is Judge Mtmboa and what language is ‘comprimosed’


Whats the fuss about this judgement. You may as well get a video recording of the judgement and commence your skeleton arguments. I dont think the written judgement will differ in substance from what was pronounced in court.

The Analyst
O………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………O Why is the Law Society in such a hurry to disbar Kasambara?, or they think he would be practising in jail? . . . why not wait for judgement on 22 August, and perhaps the outcome of the appeal process? . . . nanga if you disbar him now and, God forbid; the appeal favours him; will you not be looked at as confused maggots trying to reverse this? What happened to organisation of mind and patience? . . . if judgement on Lutepo’s case was available the same day, is it illegal to have variations in timimg for… Read more »

Azingopita kundende awo asatinyansepo apa. Who are they? Super humans? My foot!

daniel mapulanga

Let me predict now,he will be acquired and be a freeman during judgement day

International Observer
International Observer
To my understanding I thought cases and judgements are managed and punishment meted by one Judge at a time unless there is a provision of a Jury, who apparently decide based on the hearing then at least people can procrastinate in any manner they choose. This issue is not yet over and the courts have unfinished business. In such a case I find it very unprofessional and out of order for the other Lawyers to begin giving their suggestions on an ongoing case because doing that will compromise a fair judgement, be it the sentencing being light or the accused… Read more »

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