4 Arrested over Limbe Fracas

Police in Limbe – Blantyre have arrested four people in connection to the tense fracas that erupted in the business hub on Tuesday between authorities and informal traders.

Tension reached a boiling point as clashes erupted between street vendors and city officials during an operation aimed at curbing illegal vending.

Limbe police spokesperson, Aubrey Singanyama, confirmed the arrests, indicating that the detained individuals face charges, including malicious damage, specifically linked to the vandalism of a council vehicle during the commotion.

The suspects have been identified as Joe Manda, 38, Charles Phiri, 35, Blessings Gowani, 18 and Abwino Kolima 30.

The incident, which occurred on Tuesday, brought chaos in Limbe, as street vendors, minibus touts, and city council officials found themselves in a confrontation.

Despite the crackdown, informal traders have swiftly resumed vending at their former, unauthorized locations, defying the efforts of the authorities to regulate street vending.

Our spot checks within the trading area indicate a resurgence of informal traders occupying their unallocated spaces, barely 24 hours after the clash, and this highlights the swift return of vendors to their usual spots.

The clashes grounded business operations to a halt, causing a standstill in Limbe.

Uncertainty on the way forward following the confrontation remains as city council officials are yet to make comment on the matter.

The ongoing struggle between street vendors and authorities underscores the challenges faced in regulating informal trading in Blantyre.

As the city grapples with this issue, the clash serves as a stark reminder of the complexities and tensions inherent in attempts to enforce regulations within the street vending community.

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