Court asked to fire MEC commissioners

Lawyer for Dr. Saulos Chilima in the elections appeal case, Dr. Chikosa Silungwe, on Wednesday asked the panel of seven Supreme Court Judges to order President Peter Mutharika to sack Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) chairperson Justice Dr. Jane Ansah and MEC commissioners.

Dr. Silungwe said this should be made as additional consequential orders to the six orders that were made by the constitutional court.

He said considering that the President has failed to fire the Commissioners who were declared incompetent by Parliament, the court should come in and further order an automatic dismissal of the commissioners.

He has also asked the court to throw out the appeal case by President Mutharika and MEC citing lack of merit.

Dr. Silungwe said: “The court asked parliament to convene the public appointments committee to enquire into the competence and capability of the current MEC commissioners so I am suggesting to the Supreme Court to make a further consequential order which is that the president must be ordered to dismiss current MEC commissioners because they were found incompetent.”

But lawyer for President Mutharika, Samuel Tembenu, said making such orders compromises the separation of powers between different arms of government.

“Parliament is the one that is vested with responsibility of making laws and the Judiciary interprets the laws so it was wrong for the Judiciary to direct parliament and initiate a law from this court because initiation of bills to make them into laws is a responsibility of government through parliament and can’t come from the court,” said Tembenu.

President for the Malawi Congress Party (MCP) Dr. Lazarus Chakwera through his lawyer Mordecai Msiska has asked the Supreme Court to uphold the ruling made by the Constitutional Court on the basis that the arguments by the appellants lack merit.

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