Malawi Law Society (MLS) has said it cannot immediately say whether convicted former Blantyre chief resident magistrate David Kadwa, recently pardoned by President Peter Mutharika, will be allowed to practice.
MLS president John Suzi-Banda, in a telephone interview on Friday, said if and when Kadwa makes an application to the Chief Justice to renew his practising licence and thereby be re-admitted to the bar, the society would make a submission regarding its decision based on what the law says as well as charges that were levelled against Kadwa.
He said: “Then, it will be up to the Chief Justice to sustain an objection to our submission or not. But that will only happen only if and when he [Kadwa] makes an application.”
Kadwa, a law graduate from the University of Malawi, is among the 230 prisoners Mutharika pardoned last week as a symbol of forgiveness during Christmas and New Year celebrations.
According to Malawi Prison Service authorities, Kadwa, whose committal date was October 9 2014 and was due for release on February 8 2016, was pardoned on medical grounds.
He was first arrested in March 2006 on allegations of bribery. Two charges of alleged extortion and abuse of office were later added to his charge sheet after the State stumbled on some evidence.
In 2011, Kadwa was convicted on three counts of soliciting K500 000 as an inducement to take over a case from a fellow magistrate; accepting K150 000 as a reward for influencing a court decision and directing an accounts assistant to issue a K1 million cheque as bail refund before a case was concluded. n