Malawi works toward implementing custody time limits

Malawi's Constitution and amended Criminal Procedure and Evidence Code provide for time limits applicable to various stages of the criminal justice process, after which an accused person is no longer lawfully detained.

However record-keeping in the various institutions of the criminal justice system is not designed to track such time periods. At two consultative workshops opened by the Director of Public Prosecutions and held in Blantyre and Lilongwe in late November 2013, officials from across Malawi discussed how registers and case folders kept across Malawi could be amended in order to track time periods and to trigger release mechanisms. The aim was also to ensure the standardisation of record-keeping across the country. The results of the consulation will be incorporated into drafts which will undergo pilot testing early in 2014.

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