Malawi Law Society wants review of guidelines on presidential pardon

The Malawi Law Society (MLS) say there is need for a review of guidelines that empower the President to pardon prisoners following an outcry after President Lazarus Chakwera pardoned a corruption convict, Uladi Mussa.
Chakwera pardoned 200 prisoners including politician Mussa who was serving a six- year jail term for abuse of office and corruption as part of the Easter celebrations.
The law empowers a Head to pardon prisoners with minor offences and those demonstrating good behavioural reform.
But MLS Honorary Secretary Gabriel Chembezi said lawyers are supporting the Special Law Commission on the Development of Sentencing Guidelines, in appealing for clarity on the scope of the President’s pardon relates to convicted public figures.
In addition, some Malawians took up on social media platforms to question whether Mussa was eligible for the parole since he was convicted of corruption, wondering if graft is a minor offence.
Mussa was convicted for influencing issuance of passports to foreigners during the Joyce Banda regime, while serving as the Home Affairs Minister.
His release has since attracted mixed reaction from the public, with some arguing that it sends a bad signal on the fight against corruption.

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