The Malawi Law Society (MLS) has appealed to government to make a quick decision on the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) which has no director and deputy director as the delay is also against the law.
The bureau, as it stands now, cannot carry out investigations on corruption allegations, an issue that has been raised by many quarters, including the donor community.
The law, according to the ACB Act, states that if both the director and deputy director are absent from duty and unable for any other reason to perform functions of their office, the President shall appoint another duly qualified person to act as director during such temporary absence or vacancy.
The law further states that provided where the period of such temporary absence has exceeded twenty-one days, the President shall, within 14 days thereafter, furnish to the Public Appointments Committee (PAC) the reasons why the vacancy in both or either of the two offices cannot be substantively filled with immediate effect and an estimate of time within which the vacancy shall be filled, being not longer than three months from the expiry of the period of the 21 days referred to.
MLS president John-Gift Mwakhwawa in an interview on Thursday said while the society is restrictedÂ to comment on the issue as they are not aware of the direction of the injunction director Alex Nampota recently obtained about his tenancy, they want the matter resolved quickly.
Said Mwakhwawa: â€œWe do not know what the courtâ€™s directives are and it will be prejudice to keep commenting on a matter that is in court. But it is our hope both parties will see the importance of resolving this matter as soon as possible. We are trying, as society, to find out the nature of the injunction.â€
Secretary for Ministry of Justice and Constitutional Affairs Anthony Kamanga said in an interview there is progress on the matter. He said reasonable people are heeding calls to bring back ACB to life.
A source close to the matter disclosed that government is putting an effort to resolve the Nampota matter out of court.
Kamanga, who is also Solicitor General, argued there is no vacancy at the ACB. He saidÂ that is why they are appealing for patience as all avenues to resolve the matter are being applied.
In the Nampotaâ€™s case, the 21 days and 14 days legal limits have expired.
Britain is withholding financial support to the bureau until a director or deputy are appointed or issues surrounding Nampotaâ€™s removal are resolved.Â