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Leston Mulli gags Saulos Chilima

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By Jameson Chauluka:

LEADING THE MOVEMENT— Chilima

Business tycoon Leston Mulli has obtained a court order stopping Vice-President Saulos Chilima and the entire United Transformation Movement (UTM) from commenting on the ongoing court case between the state and Sunrise Pharmaceuticals and Chombe Foods Limited.

Reports indicate that Mulli, who owns the two companies, was awarded K3.1 billion in compensation over the damage of property which the two companies suffered in July 20 2011 demonstrations but is seeking additional K8 billion over the same claim.

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The court order cites Saulos Chilima as first defendant, UTM Secretary General Patricia Kaliati as second defendant, Louis Ngalande as third defendant, Noel Masangwi as fourth defendant and the entire UTM as fifth defendants.

“This order restrains you either by yourselves, your servants, members or agents whosoever from making any publication on social media, the radio, television, press releases or in whatsoever manner concerning the 1st claimant, the judiciary and the Attorney General in connection with the claims by the 2nd ad 3rd claimants in the High Court of Malawi,” reads the order, dated October 3 2018, in part.

On top of the initial K3.1 billion payment which the courts directed in 2014, the two companies are demanding additional K8 billion for interest and loss of use of vehicles, buildings and other properties that was destroyed saying government’s delays to pay the money from 2014 to 2018 deprived them of their legitimate right of use of the properties.

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Chilima and UTM have been citing the payment the government made to the two companies and their additional K8 billion claim as an indication of how corrupt the Democratic Progressive Party-led government is.

“I now have the evidence that the government has paid this man [Mulli] K3.1 billion but there is a clause that the documentation of the payment will not be used as evidence in court. We will find a way that this documentation can be used in court,” Chilima told a rally in Phalombe.

UTM spokesperson Joseph Chidanti Malunga has confirmed that the movement has been served with the order saying they will abide as directed.

“UTM is a law-abiding movement. We will abide by the order because it is coming from a competent court of law. However, we have instructed our lawyers to look into the order so that we can challenge it legally,” he said.

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