Malawi Supreme Court reinstates Chaponda as Agricultural Minister: Justice Mwaungulu rules Judge Chirwa erred

Judge Dunstain Mwaungulu of the Supreme Court of Appeal has vacated a High Court order stopping Minister of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development George Chaponda from executing his duties until a probe into the Zambia maize import is over.

Chaponda: Last laugh

In his determination on Friday, Justice Mwaungulu  said the court decided to vacate the injunction because it did not ask for the said Minister to be suspended but rather asking for the judicial review.

He said the lower court erred to suspend Chaponda because the affidavits were not consistent with the law.

Justice Mwaungulu  said Judge John Chirwa of the High Court of Malawi erred in law when he ruled that Chaponda be suspended saying the judgement was not consistent with the law.

Attorney General Kalekeni Kaphale filed the documents serving notice of the appeal in the Supreme Court of Appeal, in which he argued that Justice Chirwa, among others, erred in failing to find that Presidential powers of appointment, suspension or dismissal can only be reviewed on very narrow and limited grounds.

Mwaungulu found the argument by Attorney General Kaphale as plausible after he noted  some discrepancies in the order which were inconsistent with what was pleaded for by the CSOs, an action which he said was unprocedural.

Kaphale has stated that the judge erred “in law and in fact” for failing to identify constitutional provisions that would be subject to judicial review in light of the facts so far disclosed, at the main judicial review hearing.

It added the judge also displayed bias towards the CSOs – Centre for the Development of People (Cedep), Church and Society of Livingstonia Synod of CCAP as well a Youth and Society (YAS) -that they have locus standi (sufficient interest) to remain as parties to the judicial review proceedings and failing to contextualise the proceedings in relation to the Commissions of Inquiry on the maize issue.

Lawyer Gift Chimowa who represented the Attorney Generalsaid he was pleased with the court’s determination .

But legal counsel for the CSOs Wesley Mwafulirwa said while respecting the court’s decision, the issue that there was no application for an interim injunction was debatable, saying  Justice Mwaungulu does not believe in the Rules of the Supreme Court which they  used to apply for the injunction, but that he believes in Civil Procedure Rules.

The ruling means Chaponda isreinstated Minister of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development.



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20 thoughts on “Malawi Supreme Court reinstates Chaponda as Agricultural Minister: Justice Mwaungulu rules Judge Chirwa erred”

  1. Andrew says:

    What do you say about Ralph Kasambara then? Mtambo erred a great deal in his judgement

  2. chaholichifipa says:

    Chaponda thinks that he has won?…God will punish this old man

  3. Semani says:

    I hope lesson has been taken from all media that the court doesn’t work on rumors,court work on evidence. Kamlepo stop gossiping Malawi is one don’t divide us don’t be bias where is our jet

  4. Signpost says:

    Anthu inu mukamayamba nkhani muziyamba mwadikira musanachite celebrate kaye. Mwaiona kumene yapita nkhani. A Chirwa muli kuti tsopano. Manyazi bwanji.

  5. MCP says:

    Is it PP government which appointed the so called judge Chirwa?

  6. Billy Mayayama says:

    The conduct of Judge John Chirwa in this case was uncouth and clearly biased. How on earth could he act so unprofessionally as to make an order different from the one he was asked to do? Where did Joyce Banda take this “so called Judge” from? My advice to Judge Chirwa. Please go back and learn the basic principles. Judges are supposed to be just. The pure hatred you displayed for Chaponda cannot be just.

  7. Samuel Lwara. says:

    I can see clearly in Justice Mwaungulus ruling. Lower Court at my home is traditionally biased. Ethics are ever breached. With new Judges may be will be a sigh of relief.

  8. Semani says:

    Its a lesson to all media house don’t take anything that is coming out of Kamlepo he is a lazy man a and the head Master of gossip primary school in mpoto land. Times please tell ochakwera that its time convince people through his good work don’t hate people from mwelaland not even one coz nobody will divided them they like bees

  9. Harawara says:

    We all said it that George would be found no wrong doing. How could a Presidential Inquiry set by the President who sent him to buy maize at very high price later find him guilty. Malawians are losers in this case. But some day Malawians will win against corruption.

  10. Amufumu says:

    This in not justice judicialy is there to protect the rich only and the loved ones.

  11. dyton chiwaya says:

    Mmm anyamata akummawa akasamba.

  12. wakuphili says:

    A times mukumva bwa? Shame on you.

  13. mtumbuka wodzikonda says:

    judge John chirwa is corrupt. wadya za cash gate from JB. why didn’t the tumbuka Court in mzuzu and the tumbuka CSOs make these rulings when jb was stealing money? the reason is simple. Richard banda was in state house and Roy and Geoff kachale were womanising with the stolen money!!

  14. Chirwa says:

    ok, chilungamo eti? mulungu akantheni oteteza mbavayi?

  15. koma abale inu eeh says:

    We are happy that the Bwana can continue serving the people of this country. But we are happier that Justice Mwaungulu took a broader view, and the rule of law prevails. A broader view relating to Presidential powers of hiring and firing, but a narrower reading of what constitutes serious necessity.
    Many Malawians were confident that Judge Chirwa’s ruling would be struck down by a superior and more competent Court. This is not a personal denouncement of him; rather a professional reprimand – that is how a judge should view when his/her superiors overturn his/her ruling. No two ways here.

    Now, Chirwa, should be judicial reviewed so he can explain his competence, and the part of the law that was his reference. Punishment may be necessary; or may be not. But this should be a learning moment for him and others: that you just don’t go around interpreting the law, by interpreting your own dreams.
    I think, if there were clear moments of Mr Chaponda being involved in criminality in this so-called Maize Gate, Justice Mwaungulu would have probably supported the suspension, interpreting the law with the idea that the viability of justice, and preservation of the evidence were paramount. And Bwana Chaponda could, possibly, interfere with the evidence and witnesses.
    Clearly, Chaponda is NOT guilty.
    QED. Basi.

    1. Moto Buuu says:

      if there is no smoke why their coi has recommended chaponda to be investigated? dont be fooled amakhothiwa siachilungamo even mwaungulu knows mulekeni mulungu adzatiweruze tonse apa kuzolowere kudya sete za andale kumangoikira kumbuyo mbava

  16. owen says:

    Bravo Chaponda having the last laugh! a times muli mmadzi!

  17. nkholokolo says:

    This James Chirwa is a shame to Judiciary. Let him face disciplinary action. And Honourable Chaponda must sue for defamation/libel Kalowekamo and the three CSOs including some media houses to teach them lessons.

  18. Zizipizgha says:

    Inu a mwaungulu kupepera, munthu uyu ndioipa safunira anthu akumpoto zabwino ndi wasankho, akazakupondani musazabwere kwa anthu akumpoto kuti akunvereni chisoni musamukenso kuno mukumati chitisa manyazi ma judge akumpoto wina uja ndiye anagulitsa mtundu wa amalawi pa za chisankho.

  19. Semani says:

    Chaponda and APM must fall campaign ya foyila I hope kamlepo ndi amene amakutumani a
    chita manyadzi basi

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