The Supreme Court of Appeal has stayed in entirety the ruling of the High Court which dismissed Mzuzu-based Youth and Society in a case in which it dragged Pioneer Investments and ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) to court over the K2.7 billion food rations deal at the Malawi Police Service.
High Court Judge Jack N’riva dismissed YAS in the case on the basis that it has no sufficient interest and cannot sue on behalf of Malawians.
N’riva further discharged orders freezing the accounts for Karim’s K1.5 billion and DPP’s K145 million, a decision which YAS protested by obtaining an order from the Supreme Court to have the determination stayed.
Making his ruling on the matter today, Justice Rezine Mzikamanda of the Supreme Court of Appeal stayed the decision of the High Court entirely, meaning the case that was dismissed remains intact pending determination of the appeal on whether YAS has locus standi or not.
Lawyer for YAS, Doreen Manjandimo of Ritz Attorneys at Law said following Mzikamanda’s ruling, the two accounts for Pioneer Investment and Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) remain frozen.
“One application was for stay of execution that was made by YAS. Basically, it was to stay the execution of thejudgement of N’riva that discharged the freezing orders that were obtained. On that, the Judge has allowed for a stay to be obtained on the same. This means the accounts for the respondents are still frozen”.
According to Manjandimo, the other application was made by the Pioneer Investment (PI), which was a motion tostrike out the notice of appeal.
“They were arguing that the appeal was frivolous and should be struck out. The Judge ordered that he has no power to determine on whether the appeal is frivolous or not. He said they would have to wait for a hearing before the full bench of the Supreme Court to determine on the same,” Manjandimo said.
On whether YAS has sufficient interest in the case, Manjandimo said Justice Mzikamanda also ruled that the matter will be dealt with in the hearing, whose date has not been set yet.