The Malawi Law Commission has proposed that the appointment of Sheriffs should be done by the Chief Justice and not by the Head of State as it is the case now.

Speaking at a meeting in Lilongwe, Chairperson of the special law commission on the review of the sheriff’s act, Justice Andrew Nyirenda told the media that among other things, this would ensure independence of Sheriffs in their work.

“It was observed that it is problematic and challenging to vest all the powers of appointment of sheriff officers in the president as the practice has shown that sometimes presidential appointment tend to take unnecessarily long, “said Nyirenda.

“It is imperative that there has to be separations of powers between the executive arm of government and the judiciary. Actually, this meeting will decide whether the powers should rest in the hands of the Chief Justice or indeed create a separate body all together.”

When quizzed why it has taken long for the act to be reviewed, Justice Nyirenda said most of the laws that Malawi is using were adopted from the colonial era, as such Malawi is in the gradual process of reviewing some of these outdated laws.

The sheriffs Act came into force on 1st February 1968 with an objective of regulating the operations of sheriffs in relation to the enforcement of liquidated judgment.

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