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Title:Murder and manslaughter in Malawi's traditional courts
Author:Brietzke, Paul.H.
Periodical:Journal of African Law
Geographic term:Malawi
customary courts
Abstract:In 1969, Malawi accorded extensive criminal jurisdiction to its Local or Traditional Courts, in an attempt to make the administration of justice more palatable to the Government and the people. Many 'ritual murders' in the suburban areas of Blantyre during 1968 and 1969 gave rise to the Local Courts (Amendment) Act, which constituted the Traditional Courts system in its present form. This Act abolishes the right of appeal to the High Court, prevents for all practical purposes the appearance of lawyers in Traditional Courts and empowers the President to amend any law to bring it into conformity with the Act. The resulting Traditional Courts Act provides that the Minister is to establish traditional courts and define their jurisdiction. Sections: Elements of the offences (Murder and manslaughter; 'Conspiracy' to murder; Cause of death) - Defences (Insanity; Self-defence; Defence of property) - Partial defence (Intoxication; Provocation; Self-defence - Excessive force) - Sentencing - Procedure and evidence - Conclusion. Notes; Appendix.