Despite the continuing strike by Judiciary support staff, a magistrate’s court in Blantyre recently issued a protection order to medical personnel Peter Nambala against his wife, police prosecutor Gloria Nambala, pending divorce proceedings.
“Having heard all what he [plaintiff Peter Nambala] had to say in his application for a protection order and legal separation, this court grants the plaintiff the protection order,” read the order by the Chilangoma Magistrate’s Court in Chileka, Blantyre dated December 23 2014.
We could not find the identity of the magistrate that gave the order as Judiciary spokesperson Mlenga Mvula said it he could not check the name since he was in the Northern Region on holiday. The order we have seen was signed for, but there is no name of the magistrate.
Gloria Nambala’s lawyer, Chancy Gondwe, said in a separate interview yesterday that with the strike by the Judiciary support staff raging on, challenging the order will be difficult.
Asked on the necessity of the strike when courts continue making decisions, Mvula dismissed suggestions that the support staff strike is irrelevant as Judiciary officers can handle cases without them.
“If an individual magistrate or judge feels that he or she can handle a case depending on its urgency, it can be heard without court clerks or marshals. But that does not indicate the irrelevance of the strike because such cases are very isolated,” said Mvula.
According to civil cause number 110 of 2014 filed at third grade magistrate’s court in Chileka, Nambala sought legal protection against his wife who he said is violent, disruptive and utters intimidatory statements.
“Her actions like snatching and hiding business phones, licence, disruptions and interference at the workplace are not conducive to the marriage relationship. Her conduct has reached intolerable levels and is now seeking legal protection,” reads the court document.
After granting the protection order, the court ordered plaintiff Nambala to leave the matrimonial home while the respondent (wife) will stay in the rented house, adding that she should not move to the newly built house or to a more expensive one.
The court also ordered that the respondent should not be sending threatening text messages to the plaintiff and that once she does so, the matter should be reported to police.
The order also directs the respondent to return her husband’s personal belongings such as licence, phone as well as valuable documents and also meet her own transport costs to and from work since she is employed.
The court has, however, ordered the plaintiff to be supporting the respondent and children with monthly payments for rent (K15 000), groceries (K10 000), relish (K20 000), incidentals (K10 000) and house servant (K11 000) totalling K66 000.
But he will own all businesses, work and personal documents, one mattress and ‘appropriate’ beddings.
This is not the first time the court has issued an order amid the ongoing Judiciary support staff strike.
Two weeks ago, Lilongwe chief resident magistrate Ruth Chinangwa granted an order restraining businessperson and Cashgate suspect Pika Manondo from accessing his money from a bank.