Malawi Law Society Faults President Mutharika for Judiciary Attacks

The Malawi Law Society (MLS) has faulted President Peter Mutharika for his continued attacks on the judiciary over the courts' decisions-- nullifying last year's presidential vote and ordered fresh elections by July 3 as well as the move to grant an injunction stopping the coronavirus lockdown.

Mutharika has bemoaned the decisions by the Constitutional Court and the subsequent upholding of the verdict by the Supreme Court of Appeal as a travesty of justice.

"The court did not follow the evidence and the law. To me it was a judicial coup d'etat," Mutharika said on Friday.

On Monday, President Mutharika hinted his wish to have the fresh presidential election date shifted to beyond the July 2 2020 court-set deadline due to coronavirus AND continued his relentless attacks on the judiciary when addressing his supporters in Thyolo.

"The courts stopped us [lockdown] from same courts want us to go to an election. Everybody knows that I won the 2019 election! If the court had chosen to follow the law and evidence of the election case, we wouldn't be going to another election," said Mutharika, a Yale law alumni and former Washington University law professor.

But MLS president Burton Chidongondo Mhango and honorary secretary Martha Kaukonde have co-signed a statement expressing discontent with the manner and forum the State President has used to express his dissatisfaction with High Court judges after they nullified the May 21 2019 presidential election.

Since the election was nullified on February 3, officials from the DPP have been attacking the judicial system.

And Mutharika has claimed that all over the world, people are laughing at Malawi judiciary because its decision to nullify the elections was " totally ridiculous."

Mutharika said the courts decided to nullify the elections despite the fact that they found that they were not rigged and that the irregularities did not affect the outcome.

"What has happened now is that they have set a standard that whenever there is an election and there is an irregularity, that election will be nullified," he said.

Mutharika is facing leading opposition politician Lazarus Chakwera in the fresh polls that has also presidential pretender little-known Peter Kuwani of the Mbakuwaku Movement for Development.

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