BLANTYRE-(MaraviPost)- Justice Lovemore Chikopa of the Malawi Supreme Court of Appeals, on Thursday granted a stay order to Khato Civils (Pvt) Limited, pending an appeal against Malawi Law Society (MLS).

The Supreme Court determination quashes the injunction which High Court registry in Zomba granted last week, thereby stopping all groundwork activities for government’s $500 million (MK400 billion) Salima-Lilongwe water project.

MLS obtained an injunction last Friday, but Justice Chikopa, sitting as a single judge on the bench of the Malawi Supreme Court of Appeals, granted Khatho, which was contracted by the Lilongwe Water Board (LWB) for the multi-billion kwacha project, a stay order.

Chikopa in his determination, declared that the interlocutory injunction the High Court granted to the Law Society, has been put aside.

The Judge said MLS and Khatho should attend the Supreme Court sitting ?on October 4 2017? “for a hearing on whether or not to sustain the stay hereby granted.”

The ruling means Khatho can return to its activities it was already undertaking until a determination of the matter is made.

Lawyer representing MLS, Michael Goba Chipeta, argues that the water project contravenes the Environmental Management Act as some procedures were not followed.

But Khatho Civils through its lawyer Frank Mbeta, argues earlier that MLS still had administrative remedies to address its concerns, adding the facts relied upon when the lawyers’ body filed its application for the judicial review, were incorrect and misleading.

Khatho’s lawyers also observed that the MLS based its case on the wrong assumption that Khatho Civils were oblivious of the contents of the Environmental Management Act, and had intended not to comply with the legal requirements or unmindful of compliance of the same.

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