ACB arrest Judge Manyungwa on corruption charges

Malawi’s anti-graft busting body, Anti Corruption Bureau (ACB) on Thursday arrested High Court Judge Justice Joseph Manyungwa, for alleged  for allegedly taking a bribe and passing judgement in a case that was presided over by another judge.

ACB’s Public Relations Officer Egrita Ndala said Manyungwa prepared judgement on a matter, civil cause No. 2158 of 2004 of Kurasinghe v Fargo Limited, which was presided over by Justice Maclean Kamwambe, without his knowledge.

In the case, Samitha Kulasinthe through Savjani and Company, commenced legal action against Fargo Limited at the High Court and in the ruling, prepared by Manyungwa, the judgement allegedly went in favour of Fargo while the one which was later delivered by Kamwambe favoured the complainant.

Manyungwa: Corruption allegations

Ndala said the whistle-blower alleged that Manyunga “received K2,000,000 from Fargo Limited.”

In December 2011 Blantyre Magistrate Court also issued an arrest warrant against Amir Jakhura of Fargo who is alleged to have corrupted Manyungwa to make the judgement.

Exposed

The issue was exposed when Manyungwa’s secretary called Davis Njobvu of Savjani and Company advising him that his boss was to deliver the judgement.

“Mr. Njobvu [who represented the plaintiff] went to see the secretary and confirmed that indeed Justice Manyungwa had written the judgement in favour of Fargo Limited notwithstanding that he did not hear the matter and that the judge who actually heard the case is still in service, alive and well,” reads part of the letter, dated May 4 2010.

The Judicial Service Commission is also said to have probed Manyungwa on the matter and faulted him.

Bail

ACB said the Judge faces a charge of misuse of public office contrary to Section 25 B (1) of the Corrupt Practices Act.

He was formally charged on Thursday but released on unconditional bail.

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