Malawi minibus operators warned against overloading: Seat 3 people per row

The Malawi Police Service, through Department of Road Traffic, has appealed to the general public, mainly commuters to be seating three people on a minibus seat row to avoid accidents that happen due to overloading.



Minibuses should not overload passengers

Minibuses should not overload passengers

Government, through the Road Traffic Directorate, directed that minibuses carry three people on a seat roll instead of four; this was a safety measure, but minibus operators have apparently ignored this orders as they still packing for people per seat.

According to the Blantyre Urban Traffic Command Assistant Superintendent Alex Ndolo Police, Hiace minibuses are mandated to carry 16 passengers while Vannette minibuses should be carrying 12 passengers including drivers and conductors.

Speaking on Thursday through Tikhale Tcheru progamme on state broadcaster, MBCtv, Ndolo urged the general public and minibus operators to follow instructions to ensure safety of the passengers and their property.

“It is high time Malawians started observing the laws by ensuring that the capacity must be right according to the rules.

“They should not allow to be loaded four passengers per seat; the rules and road permit are very clear on this. Therefore, it is important that the capacity must be according to the rules,”  he said.

He said overloading causes accidents, noting that its a danger to board a minibus that is already filled to its capacity.

But one of the commuters, who was involved in the programme, observed that minibus operators flout the laws and load four passengers on a seat roll during peak hours (in the morning and evening) and law enforcers are not seen on the roads during this critical hours.

The concerned citizen therefore urged law enforcers to intensify night patrols and mount check points on major routes connecting residential areas as this, according to him, would prevent minibus operators from flouting the laws.

Tikhale Tcheru TV programme, being produced by Elephant Media Productions with funding from  Petroleum Importers Limited (PIL), is a Malawi Police Service initiative

PIL Chief Executive Officer Enwell Kadango told Nyasa Times in separate interview that they partnered the Malawi Police to help in advancing a safe and secure society by highlighting the duties and responsibilities of the duty bearers and the communities.

Kadango said the TV programme will help viewers and the general public at large realize their roles in as far as issues of security are concerned.

“Our business require security, so too our clients and every Malawian. We need to help the Malawi Police in creating a free-crime Malawi.

“So, the duty and responsibility of every person to report to police any suspicion person or fishy dealings to curb crimes and related vices.

“Malawi Police require our support to ably execute their expected roles in protecting property, life and other fundamental freedoms and rights of individuals,” said Kadango.

He said they will also take advantage of the programme to highlight the dangers of keeping fuel and other flammable products in homes.

On her part, Southern Region Police spokesperson Beatrice Mikuwa hailed PIL for partnering with the law enforcers, saying their support will help reduce crimes in the country.

She cited financial constraints as major challenge suffocating their efforts in combating and detecting crimes in the country.

The Malawi Police Service is a government organ under the Ministry of Home Affairs and Internal Security and its operations are provided for under the laws of Malawi, notably the country’s Constitution and Malawi Police Service Act.

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There are many contributing factors to lawlessness by the minbus operators. First, I am afraid to say that the Department of Road Traffic is to blame coz they issue COF to minbuses with chairs that can accomodate the malpractices. Its better all minbuses be certified fit to travel on the roads of Mw wen they are fitted with isolated single passenger chairs so that the 4th passenger shd not hv a place to seat even if he/she wants to force oneself into the minbus; 2 the passengers themselces are greatly to blame to be forced to seat 4 in a… Read more »

a polisi amangopatsidwa ndalama basi . amachita kuipatutsira dala patsogolo posaonekela lamulo silingagwire nchtito

Jeremiah White Mwale
To say the trueth Even Police Officers is also allow Min Buses to pass because some of them they are their friends or the owner of Min Buses are Police Officers. Let the Police Department make the Number which we can give them information. And those who are working on behalf of Min Buse Association they have also problems because is those who tell all passengers that they must board 4 in one chair, they used these words (Ngati simukufuna mupange hire) And the Min Bus Association top Boses they don’t monitor all Min Buses in Town what they know… Read more »

Overloading ndi speed chimene chikhozza kupangitsa ngozi ndichiyani? Ine yanga ndizinyamulabe 4. apo bii ndikokomezza za kashigeti


Nononono! this issue, i mean this issue is not in the hands of passengers only. you the law infocers take it serious. you can not say the public must take care of their properties, yet you are there to protect them.

Musazafulu Dums.

Zitsiru kwambiri ndi ma customer bwenzi akukana kuti ngati ndi chonchi tonsefe tisikamo kupanga kawiri katatu anthu azowera.


This is upto the passengers themselves, if they are happy to be dying so be it otherwise moyo wanu omwe you need police to enforce the rules for you? Kupusa eti!! chilichonse police? Boma? Just tell driver kuti sitikufuna kufa 3 per chair zipita minbus yazaza……then wait for another one. Better be late for office or home than die……


Malawi knows no rules and regulations, we are in a jungle. who cares?

Pitala wofoira
This is just one of the good laws that we have in Malawi but can not enforce them. There is no mechanism to track and punish operators who don’t follow the law. They will just tell you to buy your own car if you don’t wanna sit 4 per seat. Where can we complain. We see police getting bribes from drivers who carry 4 passengers, what mechanism is there to bring them to book. Don’t cheat us that you don’t know that these things are happening. If you are looking for funding just convince them and chew the money. Mini… Read more »

Zonse ndi apolisi athu amasekelela zopusazi. Even mayendetsedwe a bus zo pamseu enafe timangokhala ngati tilibe malaisence koma iwowo. Malowedwe amumseu, kaimidwe zonse zosimbwa zokha zokha apolisi kumangosekelela bola k200. A polisi mwatikwana kuononga dziko

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