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Disciplinary Committee

The Disciplinary Committee of the MLS (the Committee) is established by the LELPA, under section 90. The Committee has powers to inquire into the conduct of legal practitioners at the request of the High Court and on a complaint made by any person stating grounds on which the High Court could make an order under Section 89 of the LELPA against a legal practitioner. It also has all powers of commissioners under sections 9 and 10 of the Commissions of Inquiry Act.

The Committee has the following functions:

  • receive complaints referred to it by the MLS and the general public or a court;
  • investigate all complaints brought before it;
  • conduct hearings on disciplinary matters; and
  • impose any penalty specified under section 96.

For purposes of an inquiry, the Committee has all powers of Commissioners under section 9 and 10 of the Commissions of Inquiry Act, cap 18:01 of the Laws of Malawi. If as a result of such an inquiry the Committee considers that a prima facie case has been established on which the High Court might have made an order under section 89 of the LELPA, the Committee has powers to make determinations under Sections 96-98 of the LELPA. However, if as a result of such an inquiry the Committee considered that such a prima facie case has not been established, the complaint is dismissed appropriately.

Composition of the Disciplinary Committee of the Malawi Law Society

Pursuant to the LELPA Section 90(1), the Committee consists of the Solicitor General, who is also the Chairperson of the Committee, one Senior Counsel who is appointed by the Attorney General, one legal practitioner of not less than 10 years standing at bar elected by the MLS and two members of good standing in MLS and who are not legal practitioners and are appointed by the Attorney General.

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