MCP, UTM lawyers argue ‘appeal must fall’: Malawi poll case

Lawyers for  Malawi Congress Party (MCP) president Lazarus Chakwera and UTM Party leader Saulos Chilima who are disputing the May 21 presidential poll results have asked  Malawi Supreme Court of Appeal to disregard an appeal by President Peter Mutharika and Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) to have the elections case thrown out.

UTM’s Micheal Usi (L), Chilima and Chakwera during the Adjournment

Mutharika and MEC appealed against the decision by the High Court sitting as the Constitutional Court on June 22 2019.

The lawyers for Mutharika and MEC were first to make their submission in support of their appeal grounds.

Taking their turn, UTM and MCP lawyers asked the Supreme Court to allow the presidential election petition case to proceed in the Constitution Court.

Lawyer Dr Chikosa Silungwe, representing UTM president and first petitioner Saulos Chilima,  urged the  the court to disregard the appeal, saying Section 100 of Parliamentary and presidential Elections is clear that a petition is a petition and civil procedures rule is very clear on what constitutes a claim and that a petition is not a claim.

On filing fees, Silungwe said the decision of the lower court was clear that the matter would be dealt with administratively.

“As an officer of the court, the decision of the lower court was very clear, any charge or inefficiency, is attributable to Lilongwe Registry.

“ We should be very slow in attributing aspersions of impropriety on fellow counsel. The appeal must fail; it’s misconceived and without direction,” said Silungwe.

On his part.  Chakwera’s lawyer, Senior Counsel Modecai  Msisjha said the appellant keep contending fraud but  were now shifting the responsibility of proving the fraud to the second respondent (Chakwera).

Msisha said  stamps on the court documents would clearly show when the petitions were filed and argued that even if no payment has been made, no party can question what the court has received.

“The explanation of the court below on what might have happened is quite adequate,” aid Msisha, adding: “The court did not admit a fraudulent petition because there was no fraudulent petition.”

Senior Counsel Titus Mvalo,  also Chakwera’s lawyer who was accused of improperly filling the petition documents and possibly to have committed fraud in the process, presented evidence of receipts for the fees paid while filing the petitions.

“So the appearance fees have been established,” Mvalo argued.

Should the Supreme Court uphold the ruling of the lower court, the matter in the Constitutional Court would proceed on Friday but should the Supreme Court agree with President Mutharika and MEC that the lower court erred to dismiss their application, the current proceedings in the Constitutional Court falls off.

The judges are expected to make a preliminary ruling to dismiss the appeal or allow proceedings to continue .

Both MCP and UTM claim the May 21 presidential election was rigged in favour of Mutharika who was declared winner with 38 percent of the votes trailed by Chakwera with 35 percent and Chilima with 20 percent.

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Jason Bailer
Jason Bailer
2 years ago

In order for justice to prevail the court has to continue – “Kutsutsa Galu Nkukumba”. No kangaroo or jungle Rule of Law.

Vivian
2 years ago

Atumbuka ndi anzawo wobvina gule wakumadzi awa wauponda

ZEBEDE
ZEBEDE
2 years ago

This case DPP and MEC munya…. I wonder why they are still insisting of appealing. malawians those peple in DPP are stupid they cant run the country in that way whos is the most IDIOT IN THIS COUNTRY ADVISING MUNTHALIKA? They rigged and then they want the cases cancelled, evidence is there they rigged. They cross examin chilima we saw remaining chakwera why want to appeal against this case? I have noticed or realized that the most corrupt court and judges are in BLANTYRE believe me. There a need to reform MEC and the Electral process, there it wil consists… Read more »

Charie
Charie
2 years ago

Koseku mkufuna stamina chakwera or chilima zimenezo sizikuveka mulandu uchotsedwe cos odandaula sanatsate malamulo aboma .finding apite kukhothi kukatsekula mulamu pomwe wachitetezo wako sunafuse

Mr Truth Pains
2 years ago

Wina Cadet wa DPP ndi mec wayamba kale kulira , mlandu upitilira batsi.

I told u kuli mitu yama Lawyers ku opposition apwanga ma Cadets mulira heavy.
Dr Silungwe , Modecai Msiska simasewera ndi ku team DPP ndi MEC kulibe size yawo, onse achinana Kaphale kaya Chokoto ndimafana kwambiri.

Namalila
Namalila
2 years ago

MULANDU UCHOTSEDWE MA LOYER ADZIPITA KWAWO AKALIME FODYA SHIT

Nambuma Girl
Nambuma Girl
2 years ago

DPP Cadets, bwanji simukodzedwa? This is a clear sign that people don’t want DPP and it has lost the tenancy.

TOSH
2 years ago

MEC AND DPP THEY ARE JUST WASTING THERE TIME AND ENERGY THE COURT IS PROCEDING WHETHER THEY LIKE IT OR NOT, DPP AND MEC WILL TRY ANY MEANS TO DESRUPT THIS CASE BUT IT WONT WORK GOD IS ANGRY WITH THERE DOINGS

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