The High Court has prolonged an order barring the government from implementing a 21-day lockdown applied by Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC) despite a rise in the number of coronavirus cases.
In his determination, Judge Kenyatta Nyirenda has ruled that the injunction against the lockdown be maintained until government had put the necessary socio-economic protection measures in place.
Malawi Law Society said there were some legal irregularities in the implementation of some Covid-19 measures.
Malawi’s confirmed coronavirus cases are hovering at 36, including three deaths.
HRDC argued that government had not prepared an adequate safety net to protect the poor.
The injunction was obtained on the back of opposition fears that government is going to use the pandemic to delay the court ordered fresh presidential elections, and keep incumbent Peter Mutharika in power.
Already, controversial Malawi Electoral Commission chair Jane Ansah — widely viewed as a Mutharika surrogate — applied to have the election postponed. The courts rejected this application.
Supreme Court of Appeal is set to rule on the appeal by electoral body and Mutharika against Constitutional Court order for fresh elections.
A five-judge panel of the High Court sitting as the Constitutional Court on February 3 2020 nullified the May 21 presidential election, citing irregularities, especially in the results management system.