TWO senior judicial officers in Malawi are rowing over whether a new law includes a provision banning breaking wind in public places.
The new bill would criminalise farting in a bid to promote "public decency", according to Justice Minister George Chaponda.
"Just go to the toilet when you feel like farting," he told local broadcaster Capital Radio.
Solicitor general Anthony Kamanga disagreed with Chaponda's views, saying the provision in the law which states "fouling the air" is illegal refers to pollution.
"How any reasonable or sensible person can construe the provision to criminalising farting in public is beyond me," he said.
"Any person who vitiates the atmosphere in any place so as to make it noxious to the public to the health of persons in general dwelling or carrying on business in the neighbourhood or passing along a public way shall be guilty of a misdemeanour," states the Local Courts Bill, which is due to come into force next week.
Chaponda, who is a trained lawyer, claims the bill also refers to flatulence.
“Would you be happy to see people farting anyhow?” he asked, while speaking on the radio station's Straight Talk programme.