Supreme Court Judge Renzine Mzikamanda grew cold feet in making a determination on former minister of Justice and Constitutional Affairs Raphael Kasambara’s appeal against revocation of his bail and said that the matter needs to be brought before more than one judge.
It is a clear case of a judge being caught between doing the right thing or embarrassing his fellow judge.
Kasambara’s bail was revoked by High Court judge Michael Mtambo in September.
Judge Mtambo revoked the bail over alleged infringement in his private space by the former justice minister allegedly accessing his private information in form of CV – which is on the internet.
Justice Mzikamanda chose not to be the one to embarrass his fellow judge and decided a panel of judges would be the best setup to overrule Mtambo because it will be shared responsibility.
Malawi’s senior and prominent lawyer Modecai Msiska, representing Kasambara, put across a very strong case saying, a judge cannot be a complainant, a prosecutor and a judge in a matter in which he is the aggrieved party.
Msiskas argument clearly states that Mtambo felt aggrieved he should have brought the matter before another judge.
Mtambo’s action was the final confirmation of public suspicion that he has a personal issue with Kasambara as there was no basis for revocation of bail. The judge clearly overeacted on this matter.
Kasambara, currently battling a heart problem, is facing the charge of conspiracy to commit murder in the case of the shooting of former Ministry of Finance budget director Paul Mphwiyo at the gate of his Area 43 residence in Lilongwe on September 13, 2013.