Malawi: Simbi Threatens to Sue, Judges Could Also Drag DPP to Court Over Bribery Allegations

18 February 2020

It seems it doesn't pour but rain for the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) which after an appeal loss took to the streets on Monday to demonstrate against the five Constitutional Court judges calling them names and branding them corrupt - now faces law suits for the party's actions.

Information reaching Nyasa Times indicates that construction industry mogul Ashan Simbi Phiri has instructed his lawyers to sue the DPP over a placard demonstrators carried showing that Simbi bribed the judges to rule against the DPP in the election court case.

Ironically, it Anti Corurption Bureau (ACB) arrested Thomson Mpinganjira, owner of FDH Bank, who is seen as close to the DPP , and he has since been charged with three counts in relation to the alleged judge bribery attempt.

But in a spin that has gone wrong, the DPP took to the streets branding the judges and Simbi as corrupt, a situation that has prompted Simbi to seek legal recourse.

"Unless he changes his mind but he has instructed his lawyers to sue the party over such an allegation," said the source.

Meanwhile, one of Malawi's prominent legal minds Ralph Kasambara citing law of torts wrote on his Facebook page that the five judges could sue for defamation.

"Can the group of 5 judges sue for defamation the bearer of the placard, the Party sponsoring the demonstrations and/or leaders of the demonstrations?

"Can Mr Simbi sue for defamation the bearer of the placard, the Party sponsoring the demonstrations and/or leaders of the demonstrations?" wrote Kasambara.

Kasambara went on to ask as what chances, from a sociological perspective of law, does the 2019 presidential election case stand on appeal following this demonstrations that have clearly demonised the judiciary.

Many Malawians have taken to social media indicating that DPP has stabbed itself for taking a fight with the judiciary at a time that they are appealing their case.

"Who does that. Anyway, may be as they say that when you are about to die... uoi don't listen to the voice of reason," one wrote on Facebook.

The senior DPP officials who took part in the march included presidential adviser on political affairs Francis Mphepo and Roads Authority board chairperson Brown Mpinganjira, DPP regional governor (South) Charles Mchacha, DPP secretary general Grezelder Jeffrey, DPP legislators Sameers Suleman and Chimwemwe Chipungu.

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