Malawi Law Society, Women Lawyers Association risk being struck from poll case

Judge Healey Potani has told the Constitutional Court on Thursday that the Malawi Law Society (MLS) and Women Lawyers Association have not complied with the law to file with the court relevant documents to join the landmark poll case as friends of the court.

MLS lawyers Martha Kaukonde (L) and  Charles Mpaka leave the courts

Potani said this at the start of the high profile presidential election case and lawyers from Malawi Congress Party (MCP), UTM, Malawi Electoral Commission and President Peter Mutharika are yet to respond to the matter.

But High Court and Supreme Court registrar Agnes Patemba says the two bodies have not submitted the documents despite previous directions from the court.

“That both amici curise do file and serve the amicus briefs by Monday, the 12th of August 2019 not later than 4:30pm,” says Patemba.

Patemba says failure to do so will lead to their struck off from the case without further notice.

UTM Party president Saulso Chilima and MCP leader Lazarus Chakwera are challenging results of the presidential election which MEC chairperson Jane Ansah declared was won by Mutharika. The results indicated that Chakwera was second and Chilima third.

Chakwera contends that Mutharika “won a fraudulent election” fraught with irregularities, including alleged stuffing of ballot papers with pre-marked ballots, tampering with election results sheets through correction fluid and being found in possession of  result sheets at home.

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