Msiska turns down Justice minister role as it would appear ‘rewarding’

Malawi’s prominent lawyer Mordecai Msiska, Senior Counsel (SC) has turned down a ministerial post in President Lazarus Chakwera’s Cabinet as he claimed it would appear as a reward having successfully represented Chakwera in the case that Constitutional Court threw out the results of the May 2019 election which electoral commission initially declared former president Peter Mutharika winner.

Modecai Msisha SC: Thanks, but no thanks

Msiska— was Chakwera’s lead lawyer in the presidential election nullification case that gifted him the presidency— and the President appointed him on Monday to be Minister of Justice and Constitutional Affairs, succeeding Mutharika appointee Bright Msaka.

But Msiska has said he communicated the decision to the appointing authority appreciation for being considered for the post, though he would not be taking the offer.

The respect lawyer said he does not consider it appropriate to take the post.

“It would appear as if I am being rewarded in my role in the elections case,” said Msiska.

Msiska said he has other commitments to do with his law firm and is convinced that there are many other lawyers who could take up the post.

“I advised that I could not take up the appointment for personal reasons; just a matter of certain preferences and obligations that I have,” he said on Tuesday.

Msiska said he has obligations with members of his staff at the legal firm he owns.

“I could not walk away from these obligations,” he said.

“Having been lead counsel in the elections case and my getting on to the administration particularly Minister of Justice will unduly affect the process that the governmental systems have to address,” said Msiska.

However, private practice lawyer Dr Chikosa Silungwe, a Vice-President Saulos Chilima’s ally and lead lawyer in the same case, is the new Attorney General, replacing Kalekeni Kaphale who the courts chided for being partisan, especially in his handling of the presidential election nullification case.

Commentators say Msiska’s reasons for turning down the Cabinet appointment make sense.

They argue that appearances in law are very important and it’s very noble for Msiska to behave in this way, saying it speaks volume of his character and integrity.

President Chakwera said he made the appointments in consultation with  Vice-President Chilima, who is also he line Minister for the National Planning Commission—a powerful new government agency that overseas not just implementation of long-term vision and strategy, but is also responsible for formulation of the country’s flagship projects and programmes for implementation.

Chakwera  said his Cabinet will have not more than 30 people, of which 40 percent will be women

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Cletus Egga
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Cletus Egga

This is increadable. Lawyers like this are very difficult to get in Africa now .

Bauleni
Guest
Bauleni

9 billion.. this man has refused because he knows both him and Saulosi lawyer Silungwe being attorney general and him justice minister will complicate the issue of gettin 9 billion from government. Nothing about integrity here.

Phwisa
Guest
Phwisa

Malawians you need to look far. Msisha si opusa. He is looking at 9 billion kwacha as compared to what he would get as a Minister. It’s not that he is principalled. No.

JOCKER
Guest
JOCKER

Bravo
I salute the humanity Mr. Msiska shown He is a true African who dont need to be recognised when did something wonderful

phiriwaphiri
Guest

THIS ZODIAK CAN TO NOT EVEN SAY IT BUT IF I WAS CHIMUMTHU BANDA REFUSING TO TAKE THE POST AS AMINISTER BWENZI ILI NKHANI, Z B, DONT BE LIKE M B C AND TIMES RADIOS FULL OF PROPAGANDA FOR TONSE M B C CAN AAND WILL NEVER CHANGE EMPTY PROMISES, NDIYE TIME SIDZIBEBATU NANGA SI ENEMY NUMBER 1 DPP KULIBE SHAMEeeeeeeeeee

phiriwaphiri
Guest

KOMA NDIYE ZOVUTA 1 HE HAS TURNED DOWN THE POSITION 2 CHILIMA FORGOT THE BIBLE ON THAT DAY MINYAMA 3 DID U SEE WHAT HAPPPENED WITH MLUSU IN PARLIAMENT HEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE

Sammy
Guest
Sammy

Mlusu anatani? kkkkkkk

Gold Ruyondo
Guest
Gold Ruyondo

Is siska an Africa ?
hats off for the gallant son of malawi

Jamax
Guest
Jamax

He has shown that he does not need politics of appeasement = Dr. Chakwera please think twice we are in the world of democracy.

Cavine Onyango Oguta
Guest
Cavine Onyango Oguta

Msiska’s response to his proposed appointment brings out two important lessons: 1. There are honest and good people in Malawi. 2. Presisent Chakwera is indicted to appoint people not based on their relationship with him but based on their personal appealntonserve the country; those who will put the country’s quests beyond their personal benefits. His own trustee has demonstrated that he has the support he requires, while recognising that there are Malawians who are capable of delivering citizen-driven services. This essentially ends the erra of political cronism and rewards by appointment into positions of power. The president can only perform… Read more »

Chizaso
Guest
Chizaso

Bravo Msiska, I pray that all Malawians would capture this life long lesson. You are a man of integrity and not an opportunity seeker. I have put this to record for my own library.

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