Prophet David Mbewe of Living Word Evangelistic Church (Liwec) on Friday was named the fifth claimant in High Court order extending the interlocutory order of injunction temporarily barring the government from implementing a 21-day lockdown despite a rise in the number of coronavirus cases.
Other claimants include Cecilia Kathumba, Monica Chang’anamuno, Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC) and Church and Society Programme of CCAP Livingstonia Synod.
On Friday, Judge Kenyatta Nyirenda – who granted an injunction last week Friday and a judicial review was expected within seven days – heard arguments from the claimants who among others want the State to bear the costs of the case as well as condemn Attorney General Kalekeni Kaphale on his approach as he withdrew the challenge on the case at the 11th hour.
Judge Kenyatta, who would rule Wednesday next week on whether to sustain or dismiss the injunction, extended the suspension of the lockdown until the court’s delivery of its determination on the cmatter.
Prophet Mbewe joined the claimants to stop government from suspending or implementing the complete closure of religious gatherings, according to court records.
In his order, Judge Nyirenda stated that Prophet Mbewe’s church or any church un Malawi should not be suspended from gathering until the delivery if the court’s ruling.
Prophet Mbewe’s – Shalom Mount Valley in Machinga attracts well known personalities who visit to worship including Minister for Disaster Management, Everton Chimulirenji visitd and worshipped in June 2019 when he had just been made State Vice President.
Other notable figures who worships with Prophet Mbewe include controversial minister of Irrigation and governing Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) regional governor (South) Charles Mchacha Walter Nyamilandu, president of the Football Association of Malawi (FAM) and former parliamentarian Bertha Masiku.
Meanwhile, Malawi’s confirmed coronavirus cases jumped from 23 to 33 including three deaths.
But those figures are likely to be underestimated as only 553 people have been tested so far.
President Peter Mutharika announced the country would enter into a three-week lockdown and said the measure could be extended if needed.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :