Malawi Mobile Limited (MML), a private company that sought to establish a mobile phone network, will get another day in the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (Comesa) court to prove their K98 billion compensation claim.
MML filed an appeal against an earlier judgement of Comesa Court that dismissed its claim against the Malawi Government and Malawi Communications Regulatory Authority (Macra) for illegal termination of a mobile network operator’s contract.
Through private practice lawyer David Kanyenda, MML argued that that the whole judgement and proceedings were tainted and affected by procedural and substantive mistakes of law.
A fresh panel of seven judges is now chaired by principal judge Qunisile Mabuza.
The Comesa court has orderedto “amend its pleadings”.
The judges have also trashed Malawi government’s position that Comesa court has no jurisidiction on the matter.
Kanyenda has since welcomed the ruling as “relief” to MML.
Attorney General Charles Mhango could not immediately comment.
The development follows an April 23 2017 decision of the Appellate Division Court of the Comesa Court which sat in Lusaka, Zambia and threw out MML’s claim against the Malawi Government and Malawi Communications Regulatory Authority (Macra) for illegal termination of a mobile network operator’s contract.
Macra terminated MML’s contract over contractual disagreements that led to a protracted legal battle, which at some point saw the High Court of Malawi awarding K55 billion compensation to the company. However, the Malawi Supreme Court of Appeal reversed the lower court ruling.
MML was registered as a private company under registration number 6375 at the Office of the Registrar of Companies in Blantyre and a mobile telephone licence, valid for 15 years, was issued to MML on April 19 2002.
The company is owned by three investors—Finanz Capital Management Private Limited of South Africa with 55 percent stake, Finanz Holdings Limited of Mauritius with 35 percent and 3x Telecommunications with 10 percent shareholding.