Former Attorney General Antony Kamanga is now in the bench as a new Supreme Court judge after being appointed by President Peter Mutharika, Judiciary spokesperson Mlenga Mvula has confirmed.
Kamanga, who once served as Solicitor General, is yet to be sworn in as Judge of Appeal.
He holds a bachelor of laws, an LLM (Master of Laws) and a diploma in legal drafting.
University law professor, Danwood Chirwa, said Kamanga “as one of the longest serving legal draftsmen, he will be of immense help to the court in trying to figure out what was intended by the various laws that we have.”
In comments published in the Weekend Nation, Prof Chirwa of Cape Town University explained that as the appeal court sits often to decide matters of legal interpretation and in a panel of at least three, his relative inexperience in actual litigation will not affect the quality of his judgements.
He told the paper that he has not been impressed with poaching of Attorney Generals from the Judiciary and then returning them to the bench as this means that a member of the Judiciary is reduced to being a servant of the Cabinet and only returned after defending and advising the government in some of the most controversial policies, saying this undermines judicial independence.
“Where an Attorney General, who is a civil servant is appointed to the Judiciary as a permanent judicial officer, it is possible to talk of judicial independence in ways that it is not possible when we talk of poaching from the Judiciary,” the law expert is quoted by Weekend Nation.
The Judiciary spokesman has meanwhile disclosed that there are also four vacant posts for judges of High Court which will be filled soon.
Judicial Service Commission makes recommendations to the Office of the President and Cabinet (OPC) with a list of qualified personnel to be appointed as Judges of High Court or Supreme Court of Appeal.