Jovita Gundampanda of Chilomoni, Blantyre, continues where his father left off. In the last ten years, he has been trying to get money his late father won from government.
The problem is that the lawyer they engaged, Edwin Banda, will not relinquish the money even after the Malawi Law Society (MLS) ordered him to do so.
Elias Gundampanda was a well-to-do person who owned some property in Blantyre. One of his many pieces of land was eaten up by a road, forcing him to sue government.
He won up to K2 million (about $8 000) in compensation.
Banda represented Gundampanda in the case, Civil Case number 1246 of 1999.
He collected the money and only gave his client K500 000 (about $2 000). His conduct infuriated MLS which dragged him before a disciplinary committee.
â€œIt is the finding of the committee that the respondent [Banda] did not conduct himself honourably in this regard and is guilty of conduct tending to bring the profession into disreputeâ€¦the Committee directs that the respondent pay over the sum of K1 526 157.94 (about $6 104).
â€œâ€¦the committee further directs that the Respondent do refund the sum of K54 500.00 (about $218) to the complainant being expenses incurred,â€ reads part of the 2010 ruling of the disciplinary committee.
The committee included Anthony Kamanga as chairperson, Arthur Msowoya and Dalitso Kafere who all signed for the ruling for matter number 005 of 2010.
By then, Gundampanda had died of diabetes and his son Jovita was appointed to chase after the money.
In his defence, Banda told the committee that he did not give the money to the client because he deducted it as costs for the work he had done for Gundampanda elsewhere which totalled over K3 million (about $12 000).
Banda also said he paid Gundampanda K800 000 (about $3 200) out of the K2 million (about $8 000) he collected on his behalf from government.
The committee also wondered why some documents Banda produced to the committee were â€œexceptionally new for a document made in 1999, 2000, 2004 and 2008.â€
â€œI went to Edwin Banda after the ruling, but he refused to give me my money and threatened that if I bug him anymore he would sell some of my fatherâ€™s property,â€ complained Jovita, who is struggling to make ends meet in Chilomoni.
He said he has been to Anthony Kamangaâ€™s office long enough to know that he was being ignored and said MLS president John Gift Mwakhwawa is not helping either.
But Mwakhwawa said he is not shielding Banda.
â€œMr Banda has refused to pay the money, saying he is still not in agreement with the findings of the disciplinary committee and that leaves Gundampanda with two options: He can find a lawyer and sue Edwin Banda or the disciplinary committee, through the office of the Attorney General, can take up the issue with the court,â€ he said.
Neither Banda nor Kamanga could be contacted for comment.