The High Court in Mzuzu has thrown out a residents’ application for an injunction to stop construction of a tarmac road in Mchengautuwa Township until Mzuzu City Council (MCC) compensates them.
Thirty-five residents, through lawyer Leonard Mbulo, dragged MCC and Plem Construction Company Ltd to court for failure to compensate them after their property was allegedly affected by construction works.
The residents were arguing that the two organisations are responsible for the damage.
According to a statement of claim filed in the High Court by the residents, MCC and Plem earmarked the residents’ houses for demolition.
Making the ruling on Wednesday, High Court judge Thomson Ligowe dismissed the application for an injunction noting civil works were almost complete and granting the injunction will not have any effect. He said the injunction would make sense if the application was made earlier.
Reacting to the ruling, Mbulo said his clients will respect the court’s decision. He said the parties will now go into mediation.
“Although we lost the application, we welcome the mediation. It will help resolve the issue. There are many ways of resolving issues and mediation is one of them, so we will wait from the registrar on the mediation date,” said Mbulo.
MCC’s lawyer William Chibwe said the council is not refusing to pay the complainants but there are processes that have to be followed. He said there is need to verify if their complaints are genuine. n