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Phone-in programmes case ruling Wednesday

The High Court in Lilongwe is expected to deliver its ruling on the application for an interim interlocutory order restraining Malawi Communications Regulatory Authority (Macra) from further suspending phone-in programmes.

Macra effected a ban on phone-in programmes aired by radio stations which are not using gadgets that relay a delayed feedback.

But Misa-Malawi and a number of radio stations that include Times Radio, Zodiak Broadcasting Station and Capital Radio applied for an interlocutory injunction to restrain Macra from effecting the ban until the court makes its determination.

In separate interviews yesterday, lawyers representing Misa-Malawi and Macra, John Suzi-Banda and Kingsley Mapemba respectively, said the ruling will be made Wednesday next week.

“Nothing much transpired at the court, both parties in this matter received a call that the judgment was not ready as we were preparing to go to court and we were told it will be ready on Wednesday, September 25 2019,” Suzi-Banda said.

Mapemba concurred with Banda saying the court did not meet yesterday as expected.

Misa-Malawi applied for the injunction and judicial review of the matter with an argument that the ban of the radio programmes violates the applicants right to press freedom.

Macra placed the ban on June 7 2019 citing unethical and careless reporting of post-election events as the main reason.

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