The Directorate is headed by the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) who is appointed by the President subject to confirmation by the Public Appointments Committee of the National Assembly. The DPP is responsible for instituting and undertaking prosecution of criminal offences in any court (except for court-martial).
The DPP may also continue criminal prosecution initiated by any other person or authority. The DPP may delegate his prosecution powers to a person or authority provided that such person so delegated shall be accountable to the Legal Affairs Committee of Parliament as regards the exercise of the delegated powers.
Further to this, the DPP is responsible for giving consent to prosecution of offences under the Corrupt Practices Act by the Anti-Corruption Bureau. Under this arrangement, the DPP is required to give reasons in writing where consent is withheld.
The DPP is an independent office but only subject to the general and specific directions of the Attorney General. The DPP is based at the MoJCA in Lilongwe, and has national reach through various officers both within the MoJCA and the Police Service.
The DPP coordinates all the prosecutorial powers in the country. All other institutions, both State and non-State ought to seek his or her consent to prosecute any matter in any Court of law in the country. This centralization of power makes the DPP a very influential and prominent office within the Ministry of Justice.