BY RALPH KASAMBARA
The State President has called upon the Judiciary and Ministry of Justice and Constitutional Affairs (MoJ) to expedite prosecution of all criminal cases (past and present ) involving public resources. Indeed this is what Malawians have been and are demanding.
Our Humble Proposals on Way Forward
1) The MoJ should as a matter of urgency draft a Bill amending sections 2 and 6A of Courts Act, cap. 3:01 to create a Financial and Economic Crimes Division of the High Court. This Division will be responsible for handling all financial and economic crimes.
2) This dedicated or specialized division will hand in glove with the Chief Justice draft its own criminal procedure rules or protocols or practice directions that will be in addition to the Criminal Procedure and Evidence Code. These rules will ensure quick fair and just disposal of these criminal cases.
3) Immediately, the Chief Justice should identify judges well versed in criminal procedure to be deployed to this newly established Division.
4) Next the Chief Justice should lead the Judicial Service Commission in recruiting more judges. The President and CJ should ensure that that the appointment and swearing in process of new judges is expedited.
5) The MoJ, Attorney General, Minister of Finance and office of DPP should ensure that an appropriate budget is in place and funds secured to support the new High Court Division and recruitment of private lawyers to be engaged to compliment the Prosecution capacity of the office of DPP
6). The AG in liason with OPC and Ministry of Finance should engage private lawyers who should pursue recovery of all stolen abused or misappropriated public funds.
The legal fees payable to these lawyers should be on agreed contingency of recovery ie payment based on success and the agreed rates could vary from 5 % to 20% depending on amounts involved.