Rights defenders get High Court relief stopping MERA to close non-compliant filling stations

Human rights defenders have sought a court order stopping  Malawi Energy Regulatory Authority (Mera) has said it will shut down filling stations which do not comply with  regulations for operating such business that are under contention.

Lawyer Wapona Kita (left) gets nod for judicial review

The petitioners to court sought fo judicial review regulations which were approved by Parliament in 2004 and became effective in September 2017.

The Liquid Fuels and Gases law of 2004 states that no person or business entity shall carry out modification or any activity of a filling station without notifying the authority and obtaining a licence for such activity.

Of late, there has been a mushrooming of filling stations with some constructed at high-risk places such as near hospitals, schools and markets which is against the law.

Currently, there are 225 registered filling stations in the country with several others operating illegally, especially in the rural areas.

Mera executive director Collins Magalasi said the regulator is carrying out inspections across the country to assess the operational safety of service stations and would shut down those falling short on standards.

But High Court granted lawyer Wapona Kita the  permission to move the judicial review .

The court has further  ordered  MERA to immediately suspend implementation of Liquid fuels and gas supply amendment regulations 2017 and that implantation of standards and requirements for construction and decommissioning of retail outlets dated 5 october, 2017be suspended until the final determination of the matter.

Human Rights Consultative Committee (HRCC) board  chair Robert Mkwezalamba who have been challenging the amendments and guidelines said he was pleased with the order.

The guidelines, among others, stipulate that a service station should be located within a one-kilometre radius of an operational service station in urban settings or residential areas and that a proposed site be located within 100-metres radius of any public institution which are normally overcrowded.

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Komatu these so called human rights defenders who are they defending, look at the new constructed filling station at bwaila hospital, it will cause more harm to millions of people. Mkwezalamba did you consult your fellow civil society guru’s?


Whose rights are they defending? The rich ?


What is the relationship between Rights and Wrongly constructed Filing Stations ?

Achirita bwino a MERA. Kodi safety imene akunenayo ndeh itiiii???? We have had no accidents so far, meaning the safety standards in place are working well. Whats the fuss with filling stations??? Go to Kanengo and road to area 25 and Makata in Limbe… there are storage tanks with millions of litres side by side, are they going to move them? Has anything happened? If not Why??? Malawian policy makers are dull, emotional and corruption driven. KODI NANGA MA TANKERS AMAENDA MMISUEWA, CAUSING Traffic Jam adzienda mmiseu yao yaooo, with a radius of one kilometer from a public place,?????, and… Read more »

And which or whose rights are thw defenders defending here?


May be in this case, MERA should just close the compliant ones!

Malawians opposing everything, what do we really want? Weren’nt you part and Parcel of the consultations? Interested parties?

This behaviour must stop if this country is to develop! Komanso nthawi zina kumachitako manyazi! It shouldnt just be about money, dzisungileniko umunthu if at all you have any left in you!


Apparently MERA deliberately allowed these illigal developments instead of them advising the developers of the legal implications of their actions only to jump on them when full investment is complicated. Where do these illegal operators get the fuels without licences. A rotten society indeed.


Palibe nkhani apa. Journalists have been gagged and bribed for them not to inform people about Cheques circulating in social media. NAMISA, if you are alive, please do something. All vocal honourables in parliament are aware of this; them too have their mouths stashed with cash and have gone dangerously quite.


Cheques on same issue??? How, or your talking of a different issue?, please inform us.


Koma malaw you mean the court can give such relief when it’s about our safety…seriously….tikupita kuti Kodi. …one day one will get court relief kuti tiziyenda mbulandandithu….sad….this should be dismissed with costs for sure….

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