The Malawi Law Society (MLS) has blamed the recent cases of unprofessionalism within the legal profession on lack of passion for continued professional development training.
Executive Director for the law society Tiwonge Kayira said the society runs quarterly trainings but only a handful of legal practitioners attend.
He said: “Most lawyers do not commit themselves to continued development trainings that we do which are very helpful as they aim at deepening a spirit of integrity within the [legal] profession.”
Kayira further said MLS has taken a strong stand against unprofessionalism amongst its members saying integrity of the profession has been built over a long time but can be damaged in just a moment.
The laws society yesterday took advantage of a symposium by 4th year law students from University of Malawi’s Chancellor College to caution the legal fraternity against destroying the image of the “noble” profession.
The theme for the symposium, “The legal profession and justice delivery: Building upcoming lawyers with integrity”, was carefully crafted for such a time as this when mishandling of clients’ money and other misconducts are rocking the legal fraternity.
The guest of honour at the symposium, Justice Zione Ntaba, concurred with the MLS director saying training does not end after one is admitted to the bar.
She said: “Don’t rush at being successful, continue learning and work towards integrity and success will come.”
Justice Ntaba told the students at the symposium that there is no substitute for hard work and took a moment to share how she found herself into law school after initially enrolling for a nursing career.
She then asked the students to look back and appreciate where they are coming from saying that will give them a reason to live and act better.
She said: “Please I employ you to take care of your bodies; it is disheartening to see people waste their lives just because they have money.”
The chairperson for the symposium Felisters Francisco said the 4th year students were shocked with recent reports of unprofessional conduct within the legal fraternity, hence the alignment of the symposium to issues of integrity.
“Being a lawyer is a calling, it’s not about making money and as service providers we must safeguard its nobility,” she said.