Malawi’s capital city, Lilongwe on Wednesday was the scene of running battles between the police and streets vendors after the Lilongwe City Council launched a campaign to confiscate their merchandise.
Trouble begun when city workers under police guard started to clean up the streets and then impounded goods from the vendors along the Malanganga roadside.
Traders irked with the move , mobilised themselves to hit back at the police by pelting them with stones and some cops were physically assaulted.
Police officers fired in the air but the fear of death did not move the vendors. They overpowered most of the officers which forced the security forces to withdraw to add up their strength.
“A group of vendors threw stones at the police and smashed PTC Supermarket,” Nyasa Times correspondent who witnessed the running battles said.
Police spokesman Davie Chingwalu said “order had restored.”
The government wants the traders to move to permanent flea markets .
The development comes after Police in the northern city of Mzuzu on Tuesday opened fire after vendors reacted angrily with the action to by Mzuzu City Council’s (MCC) to confiscate some of their goods near Mzuzu Bus Depot.