Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Commitment by lawyers to fighting corruption important – Malila

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Chief Justice Mumba Malila has noted that there are legal practitioners in the country who do not believe in the ideals of the Law Association of Zambia (LAZ) and have opted to engage in corrupt practices which has contributed to the high poverty levels among citizens.

Chief Justice Malila said this is evidenced by the Financial Intelligence Centre (FIC) where some lawyers have been mentioned.

He said that for as long as the conduct, character, and commitment of lawyers at any level, in eradicating corruption remains an issue, the corruption fight will remain elusive and citizens will be consigned to perpetual poverty.

Chief Justice Malila said it was not a secret that corruption induces inefficient economic performance in a country – any country for that matter.

He said that corruption inflates the cost of low-quality goods and services, hampers long term foreign and local investment, diminishes the ability of the Government to raise revenue and thereby leading to high taxes being imposed on fewer and fewer tax payers.

The Chief Justice was speaking when he officially opened the 9th Annual Law Conference at Avani Victoria Falls Resort in Livingstone yesterday.

“It is an embarrassment to the legal profession, is it not, that there are some lawyers who do not take the ideals of this noble profession seriously and only think of ways of fleecing the country or their clients of their resources,” he said.

“Some lawyers, I grieve to say, will stop at nothing to satisfy their large appetite for material wealth, sometimes using incongruous ways to make money and more money, even if this means being accessories to crimes, especially those involving corruption. To put it crudely, some of your members, Mr. President, must work at addressing the deficit in them of good fiscal morals and professional ethics,” he said

Justice Malila said that the story of the corruption that animated past public dealings is no longer unfamiliar to any decent, well-meaning, good and reasonable citizen of this country who is of full age and competent understanding.

He charged that this debilitates the Government’s capacity to equitably provide essential public goods and services – especially for the majority poor.

The Chief Justice said that it was no exaggeration to state that all well-meaning, recent efforts in the battle against corruption, including the introduction of the Economic and Financial Crimes Court, are unlikely to record a high success rate if the majority of lawyers take an opposing stance or act as dispassionate onlookers over these initiatives.

“In fact, our lawyers wherever they are and in whatever they do, must be willing to work together in mutual respect and trust in the fight against corruption. We must all, as players and stakeholders in the legal system, share the same commitment if we are to succeed,” Justice Malila said.

He charged that lawyers should all strive to be themselves, persons of unimpeachable integrity and vision, who are ready, willing and able to provide moral, legal as well as technical leadership.

“Is it not a matter of serious regret that we see lawyers, in dramatically increasing numbers, standing up at forums away from the courts, not to fight corruption, but to root for corruption instead,” he said.

And outgoing LAZ president Abyud Shonga encourage members to live to the values that anchor their profession.

Mr Shonga said that currently, the association is collecting views in areas of the constitution that needs to be reviewed.

He challenged the practitioners to keep abreast with the new technology that changed the working culture in view of the COVID 19 pandemic.

6 COMMENTS

  1. OUR LAWYERS UNFORTUNATELY BOW TO THE HIGHEST BIDDER IN MOST IMPORTANT CASES
    AND TO THE NEEDY AND VUNERABLE ACCESS IS TOO COSTLY

  2. What fight against corruption when all you are doing is persecuting pf members without any evidence of wrong doing. Not a single pf member has been convicted because you lack any evidence. Fark off

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  3. The most prominent lawyer in Zambia who is a shining example of corruption is of course Edgar China Lungu. I wouldn’t trust any lawyer in Zambia with a barge pole. And don’t worry Stup!d KZ, his and your time will come!

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  4. Lawyers are suposed to defend criminals and not to abet crime. How can a country where a President himself, a lawyer, charges that there is corruption among his ministers, end up having a former minister defending his fellow ministers who are accused of corruption?

  5. Some bloggers are still hurting for their loss of power. Heart attack may be on the way. They do not see any good in any article published by Lusaka Times.

  6. The biggest sellouts that have handed Zambia’s democracy to dictators are lawyers and journalists. Lawyers have allowed politicians to effect unlawful decisions. Journalists have been basking in being lapdogs instead of defending freedom of speech. Just look at the Presidential defamation law. No lawyer ever stands up to show how unjust it is. Journalists working in state house often weaponise it to attack perceived enemies. LAZ are toothless bulldogs. And those who say the pen is mightier than the sword are cheating themselves

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