Lilongwe, July 28, Mana: The Judiciary has introduced a Family and Probate Division, a special branch that will be handling cases of divorce, parenting, child adoption, inheritance and succession among others.
In the past, such cases have been taking a long time to be administered due to work overload at the high court, hence the decision to introduce a special division at the court to handle the cases with special attention and specialty.
In an interview, High Court Registrar, Gladys Gondwe, said issues of divorce, child adoption, parenting and succession need to be handled with the specialty and honor they deserve as far as justice issues are concerned.
“Issues to do with family disputes, [child] adoption, inheritance and succession under the wheels of deceased estates are sensitive, hence require more attention.
“….that is when the Family and Probate Division comes in because, in the general civil division, the matters were not given due attention,” Gondwe said.
The High Court Registrar added that vulnerable groups in different societies have been negatively affected by delay, lack of efficiency and specialty in handling such issues.
“These issues really affect vulnerable groups like widows and children in our societies. We are talking of inheritance rights for women-widows who are oftentimes at risk of suffering property grabbing.
“Therefore, there is need to give such matters due to attention for them to be handled as promptly as should be,” she added.
Law expert, Gift Katundu hailed the effort of coming up with the Family and Probate Division, saying it will provide equal and fair justice to family legal matters.
“The importance of this division cannot be over-emphasized because we are looking at the ability to deliver justice timely to the public by providing equal access to a fair, equitable and efficient forum to solve family and probate legal matters,” Katundu said.
He further explained that the new division will help to protect families and children by solving their problems impartially without violence.
“The Family and Probate Division will bring sanity in families as it will solve these matters with due respect.
“We are looking at a division where people have been trained and assigned specifically to do this work because they have their own ways of dealing with such scenarios,” he explained.
A Blantyre resident, Catherine Mwamvani, commended government for the new development to assist citizens get equal and fair justice at any time through the Family and Probate Division.
“It is quite unfortunate, we have witnessed a lot of women and children losing property due to lack of proper guidance and justice.
“Thanks to government for introducing the Family and Probate division that will protect the rights of children and women at large,” Mwamvani said.