Maputo, 8 May (AIM) – At least 20 judges have been expelled from the Mozambican judiciary over the past ten years for criminal behavior, mostly crimes of corruption.
“We have a policy of zero tolerance for cases of corruption”, declared Carlos Mondlane, chairperson of the Mozambican Association of Judges (AMJ) on Monday, in statements to reporters during a meeting of judges in Maputo, held to discuss the ethical commitment of judges.
Whenever the regulatory body, the Higher Council of the Judicial Magistracy (CSMJ), “faces situations of this nature involving judges”, said Mondlane, “the policy is to apply the penalty of expulsion”.
The number of expulsions, 20 in a decade, did not mean that there is a great deal of corruption in the Mozambican judiciary. “We are not getting into the discourse of how there is a lot of corruption in the system”, Mondlane said. “Rather we recognize that the small amount of corruption that does exist meets a sharp response from the judicial system”.
On 24 April the CSMJ launched the Code of Ethics for Judicial Magistrates, an instrument through which judges make an ethical commitment to remove corruption and all other evils that weaken the administration of justice.
“We are very pleased to see that Mozambican judges do not identify with corruption”, said Mondlane. “We want to find mechanisms of prevention to combat corruption more effectively”.
Monday marks the Day of the Mozambican Judge – a date instituted to honour the memory of Judge Dinis Silica, who was assassinated on 8 May 2014, as he was investigating cases of kidnapping.