The High Court in Blantyre has granted an injunction to the Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA) and two other companies who sought relief to restrict Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC) from conducting protests at airports and borders on August 26 to 30
Judge Jack Nriva granted the injunction stopping the holding of the demonstrations in the country’s airports and borders, saying holding demonstrations in the said places would jeorpadise operations of MRA and the national economy.
HRDC is continuing with its series of nationwide protests to force Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) chairperson Justice Jane Ansah to resign for presiding over flawed May 21 Tripartite Elections which saw the commission declaring Peter Mutharika as the presidential winner.
Lawyers for MRA alongside Airport Development Limited (ADL) and National Oil Company Limited (Nocma), led by Lusungu Gondwe, argued that the HRDC can proceed to demonstrate elsewhere but not at the airports and borders.
Another lawyer, Felix Tambulasi, who is also MRA director of legal services, said the authority had a national duty to collect revenue to support the national budget and should the demonstrations proceed, they would hinder its operations and suffer losses.
The hearing was an inter-partes and lawyer for HRDC, William Chiwaya, raised four points in their preliminary objections to the application for an injunction including that the MRA commissioner general did not have capacity to stop demonstrations at airport or borders as the said places do not fall under his control.
The court in its ruling delivered on Friday accepted the application of MRA, ADL and Nocma and granted an injunction stoping the protestors from staging their anti-Jane Ansah protest at airports and borders.