Supreme Court favours Khato on Salima-Lilongwe Water Project, dismisses CSOs with costs

The Malawi Supreme Court of Appea sitting as full bench of  seven  judges on Thursday threw out an application by Youth and Society (YAS) and Centre for Human Rights and Rehabilitation (CHRR) to join the case in which Malawi Law Society tried to curtail progress on the Salima-Lilongwe Water Supply project.

Lawyer Theu represented the two CSOs

Lawyer Chancy Gondwe represented Khato

The two CSOs wanted the matter to  revert to the High Court of Malawi to determine the legality of the project in respect of awarding of the contract to Khato Civils Limited as well as commencement of work without an environmental impact assessment (EIA) report.

YAS and CHRR were denied joining the case after a single Supreme Court of Appeal judge Lovemore Chikopa dismissed their application on December 22 2017 and they appealed

in the hope that the full bench would grant them their wishes.

However, the 7-man panel of judges  led by Chief Justice Andrew Nyirenda dismissed the application and condemned YAS and CHRR lawyer Bright Theu to foot all costs for the case.

Counsel for Khato Civils, Chancy Gondwe,  asked the Supreme Court to dismiss the application saying the proceedings were already nullified by Justice Chikopa in October last year.

Last year’s ruling saw Justice Chikopa throwing out MLS appeal on the basis that the society failed to understand the technicalities of the contract between Lilongwe Water Board and Khato Civils.

The bone of contention was the Environmental and Social Impact Assessment which has since been carried out by a Portuguese consultant and approved by the department of environmental affairs.

MLS thereafter pulled out of the case after acknowledging that most of the issues they were raising were adressed like the ESIA.

Salima-Lilongwe Water project – which will pump, sanitize and transfer clean potable water from Salima to Lilongwe- came as a intervention to decade-long acute water problems in the Capital City which is also Malawi’s seat of government.

Experts forecast that Lilongwe City will soon completely run dry owing to low water levels at Kamuzu Dam.

Khato Civils is a South African based company owned by a Malawian billionaire Simbi Phiri.

Malawi government has already  signed a deal with a financier of the K400 billion Lilongwe-Salima Project, Trissag Espanola of South Africa, effectively putting on course the project that has faced several hurdles.

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David Banda
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David Banda

Wow!!! They actually heard the matter and gave a judgment!!! How luck can one be……….
But one wonders why………

JKF
Guest
JKF

I think it’s time for Malawians to start organizing demonstrations against the stupid CSOs every time we feel these dunderheads are stepping over our heads. These development projects are for us Malawians and it’s stupid of us just to see and watch these stupid political parties called CSOs blocking these beautiful and beneficial projects. We should wake up and be doing something when imbeciles are depriving us of our rights to projects which would provide us with basic needs like water.

Ntumbuka Weni Weni-Wapachitimba
Guest

Bravo Chancy Gondwe for the job well done Malawians wants development not fighting

Wamalamulo
Guest
Wamalamulo

Mr Lawyer,why carrying all these books???? Are you on the way to the library or not???? Poor Malawian lawyers!!!! Take it easy.

who do you represent?
Guest

I don’t understand how come YAS and CHRR always claim to be representing all Malawians. Where do they get the approvals from us? Its very unfortunate that they always stand on governments way blocking every development move in the name of represent us. These guys are so crooked and they don’t wish well their country and I wonder whether they are part of Malawi. In the same way their crooked friends are fighting the erection of ghandi statue. By the way, who is funding that project? Is it the government of Malawi or the Indian government? The class of Jijo… Read more »

Penjani
Guest
Penjani

Za EIA Muzitisiyila ife. Timakuuzani kuti si nkhani

My Name is Salim
Guest
My Name is Salim

Unfortunately the CSOs didn’t take into account the study of feasibility of the costs of construction going up by this delay. Shame.

Bill
Guest

Mulungu amakonda Dziko lanthu ishiiii Khato ngwilani ntchito enawo amakonda ndale tizivutika tizingokhalira kupempha kwayiwo azikondwa, apa akuziwa kuti pano tisiya kupemphempha Madzi akumwa mumakomo mwawo ndichifukwa amakaniza kuti Madzi asafike ku Lilongwe…..Ndale zinatigulitsira Ndege ndalama zake anapindula okha Dziko ayi……..!

Bingu wa Mutharika
Guest
Bingu wa Mutharika

Amen! Shame on these agents of the devil

Napoleon Muza
Guest

This is a good lesson to our corrupt organisations trading in the name of csos. They are enemies of development. They want to derail the nation from moving forward , because if it does some of these will not operate , no funding will be available to them. Next wii be khato punching back a last laugh, if some will not be declared bankruptcy. Which donor will be happy to be squaring legal fees.

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