Malawi: Blantyre City Council Bans Commercial Activities in Residential Areas

19 August 2019

Blantyre City Council (BCC) has with immediate effect banned holding of commercial activities in residential areas and appealed to the business community to go to places designated for such activities (commercial areas) to avoid noise pollution.

According to the Council, they want to curb noise pollution in the city emanating from commercial events that are held in residential areas.

BCC Public Relations Officer Anthony Kasunda said the Council has been engaging event planners to comply with the order to stop operating in residential areas.

"We inspect the gardens and engage with them so that they stop operating in residential areas and opt for commercial areas," said Kasunda.

Kasunda added that there is need for residents to abide by the laws because making loud noise in residential areas is not only an offence, but also a public nuisance.

He, therefore, urged Blantyre residents to respect each other.

"It is about humanity. Residents should respect one another; come to think of it if there are sick people, others want to study and do other activities," Kasunda said.

The city spokesperson also pointed out that business operators should always liaise with the council whenever they want to start event planning businesses.

"BCC is always open to help the business community; in fact, we are ready to assist whenever they are not sure about anything," he said.

Despite the ban to stop noise pollution in residential areas, there are some residents in the city who still perpetrate noise pollution in residential areas, according to Kasunda.

However, when BCC imposed the ban, residents from the city obtained an injunction stopping the council from enforcing the order which was later lifted in 2016, giving BCC the mandate to stop people from conducting ceremonies like weddings, engagements and bridal showers in residential areas.

The by laws governing noise pollution in the city of Blantyre stipulate that residents are not supposed to produce noise in public places unless granted permission by BCC.

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