Dark day in Blantyre: Muckraking Extra on Malawi Prison boss shooting sons

No doubt, the tragic happenings in Blantyre last Friday when an irate father, in a fit of rage, picked up his official gun and killed – execution style – his own two sons are as numbing as they are unfathomable.

Look, it is human nature to rush to condemn Senior Superintendent Evance Chisi for prematurely despatching to their maker 23-year-old Stanford and Russell, 29. How can a father be so evil?

But, wait a minute, there may be more to this tragedy than meets the eye. This might be the tragic tipping of a series of build-up issues.

This is no ordinary homicide case, no doubt about that. Chisi needs a thorough forensic psychiatric evaluation.

What made him snap? Preliminary investigations say he shot the first victim, Stanford, not once but twice. He did not stop there. He sought out the second victim, Russell, who was not even in the room and, therefore, we may safely say he was not involved in Stanford’s brawl with his sister, Lusungu.

Even to an untrained mind in things psychological or psychiatric, the early morning brother-sister brawl was just a trigger for things that have been welling up in the senior prison officer’s system.

Let investigators – both criminal and medical, for you cannot rule out one or the other in this tragedy – do a thorough job.

Having said that, the Blantyre unfortunate tragedy exposes a serious deficiency in our health-care system. In Malawi, most of us do not know we are seriously sick although the body may seem or feel healthy and fit. Our health-care system is ignoring one very important condition – mental health or psychiatry.

To most of us, mental health cases are only those where patients run naked, act bizarre or mumble incomprehensibles. But due to several factors, chief among them the worsening economic situation, most of us are depressed.

Malawi is sitting on a medical time bomb whose consequences may be worse than known major killers like malaria and the other usual suspects. Many Malawians are clinically depressed but they are not aware for our health-care system ignores such conditions. Depression is dismissed as one of those so-called ‘life-style’ diseases like BP.

Let the Friday tragic incident act as a wake up call and jog us into taking mind conditions like depression or dementia a bit more seriously.

Depression and other mind diseases, left untended, can lead to spasms of mood swings that only need a simple spark to trigger tragedy of the Friday morning Sunny Side proportions.

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52 thoughts on “Dark day in Blantyre: Muckraking Extra on Malawi Prison boss shooting sons”

  1. mwana osamvera even Bible limanena kuti afe ndinthu

  2. Missy says:

    Tingowamvetsa Mr Chisi

  3. OMEGA BEMA says:

    Ana a lero kuvuta 2 much

  4. BOMA LA KUBA says:

    Please read this article with a sober mind. Mr Tenthani is not blaming or just making a mere comparison of Malaria and Psychiatric problem. The issue is true that one may be financially, physically, intellectually viable but psychologically sick. The majority of Malawians are sick. This sickness goes hand in hand with spirituality. Every person is made of soul, spirit and body. We are always concerned with the body neglecting the spirit. Wake up Malawians. We are sick.

  5. samsonkawalazira says:

    Very disappointing indeed., In this case what do we make of the death penalty, should such beasts be spared and waste tax payers money on their welfare in prisons?

  6. make chikomukomu says:

    this is very sad . but as a parent going thru tough time with a grown up boy I ask God to take control and ask friends to help counseling both parties. with time i believe and truly believe come over.i believe the parent did his part and that some family members know what he was going through with the siblings. to some who are saying that how come that the grown up boys were still inthe house mmmh CHITSIRU CHILI NDI MWINI thats wahat i can say otherwise one cannot be happy to keep a grown up child inthe house not fending for him/herself. try somebody’s shoes and see how it fits bfo laughing at the bang bang step

  7. Nyani wa ku Mwananyani says:

    My heart goes out for the remaining members of this family, including Mr. Chisi.
    But Tenthani, please do not play doctor by attaching a “depression” label on the Mr. Chisis. Maybe he has major anger management issues, and something tipped the scale. Let the psychiatrists, no less, do their job.
    There are modern psychiatric drugs, with tolerable side effects; but the drugs are expensive. Very expensive. The government is NOT ignoring the problem of mental health; it is just prioritizing. These drugs are so expensive even in rich South Africa, the average person has no access to them. Psychiatry is a very fuzzy field (not derogatory remark), and treatments are often trial and error; as it is not like a bacterial infection where you can test the bacteria, and voila(!) – the treatment formula is there, and you have a 99% chance that it will work.
    Finally, it is ridiculous to compare mental heath with malaria, certainly in terms of their impact on our society. Way off-base comparison, indeed!

  8. Misoya says:

    Bambo wopusa zedi nanda bwanji osawapha ndi nkhonya bwanji not chipangidzo cha dziko nalo dziko lathu lingosunga anthu akale pamaudindo nzeru zawo zinatha kale si modzimiranso moto ai koma moyatsira moto skulu a midiku sno vuto nfi dziko lathu bupurrka mguti kwa munthu wosayenera wamisala vjonde asanayambe ntchito mudziwayedza kaye ngati ndiyenera kilandira mfuti

  9. Thumba says:

    The problem here was the age of the sons, they were old enough to be household masters but in their fathers house they had to be controlled like children no wonder there was rivalry between sons and their father. It must be a lesson to us all don’t keep children in your home when they have come out of age, tell them to learn to fetch for themselves even when the going looks tough.

  10. silva says:

    Any it was very pathetic for mr chisi to gun down his sons, I can’t judge him to that effect. I really understand what normally happens when there is persistent quarrel among your children. They elucidate something things which makes the parents feel bad and ashamed. I have example to that fact where parents died due to bp while trying to calm down his children who were at loggerheads. If children r from different mothers and they disagree on something they talk shit prompting the parent to intervene. I really know what mr chisi was feeling like on the material day. Take this for example our former speaker died after failing to calm down big people like mps in parliament. Let’s thing carefully over this. But one fact remain unchanged he has broken the law of land.Therefore the same law will take its course.

  11. Misoya says:

    Analakwanji ana onsewo kuwapha adaksli a nthete iwe watha kale iwe bambo wopusa zedi

  12. Molly says:

    Eeh!Something Is Wrong

  13. Thocco says:

    Bwana tenthani chonde muzilembako chizungu cha simple kuti enafe tizimva nawo.

  14. tepani wisk says:

    Only God knows the cipher behind this tragedy.

  15. amnzeru a kummawa says:

    A tenthani, mwalemba maganizo anu osati nkhanitu apa. Lembani nkhani tiwerenge pls.

  16. manyi says:

    23 and 29 r they kids. Wat of Lusungu anamangidwanso? She deserve chifukwa anaphetsa abale ake

  17. Mike siliya says:

    Comment; every body is mad, but degree of madness differs.

  18. amos says:

    The father acted out of anger and disapointment.police pliz forgive him

  19. wanyau says:

    Amisalatu amanenana kuti uyo ndiwamisala,ine Ai.

  20. killy msiska says:

    Anawo ,anali osokoneza.asiyeni a chisi.

  21. chaiwone wawo says:

    The other issue is that of weaning children form homes. At 29 somebody is still in his fathers and mothers house, what do you expect? A fully grown man that has to be treated as a child in the home is likely to resist and challenge authority. At 29 he should be stronger than the aging father and if this son was in unity with the 23 years old one against the father then your guess is as good as mine. the old man was in trouble. Tiwalere anawa with a view of making them independent at the earliest possible time and they should have their own homes where they control their own lives.

  22. Biyisikolo says:

    Well put even though those that have gone mad have too little attention. I understand that we have only one doctor specialised in psychiatry what a pity. Some children go out of hand that they behave as animals. Well am not in support of Mr Chisi but some children were better not born.

  23. kapilikoni says:

    Yes it is true that people who r on ARVs lose tempers much faster than a normal person who is not on ARVs. This is bcoz when they notice that their physical appearance has changed they think everyone who looks at them know that they r HIV positive! The Police, the Army, Prisons, MRA and Immigration have the highest infection rates. Most of them have lost their spouces and r failing to bring up their children, the situation is even worse when they bring in a new wife/husband when there r grown up children in the house and there r no counseling services!

  24. ASAAAAAAAA…BY THE WAY,AS A NATION OF 15M PEOPLE HOW MANY COUNSELORS DO WE HAVE? NEVER HEARD OF THE STATISTICS, BUT AM SURE ITS HORRIBLE! POOREST NATION ON EARTH!

  25. koma Zomatenga mfuti kunyumbazi zithe nanga taonani.wina kuombera ana pomwe wina wadzipha yekha kudedza too bad.

  26. tried of killing prisoners at chichiri now saying mental health killing ur own children,very bad!! noone law is above the law.

  27. Chakuluntha says:

    Very tragic indeed

  28. pop says:

    Ana amasikuwano mwano, amawasowesa mtendele bambo awo, chenjezo kwa achinyamata anzanga,please respect your parents,and don’t smoke

  29. king says:

    Commentkaya zawo

  30. king says:

    kaya zawo

  31. Matthews Mpofu says:

    Yes! Our healthy stakeholders and other like minded people we need to define what is ‘ whole healthy’ and go beyond the concepts of ‘ whole health! ‘ In making effort to create and build sustainable and resilient health communities!

  32. like says:

    Very true Raphael. I too feel very depressed and my mind snaps every time. I am so afraid of myself because I feel that one day I will kill one of the members of my family. I. Live in the first world where psychiatric care is available but I am afraid to say out loud the things,in my head. I am so scared, I don’t know how to begin, I don’t have the vocabulary to describe what it is I feel. I need help but I don’t know how to get it. I feel I am many persons within one splitting into various personalities at once. Full of anger one second, full of sympathy the nex. I feel like choking the life out of someone in a minute and the next I am so ashamed of my thoughts. what to do, how do you tell someone that you are insane and be believed?

  33. SGM says:

    Actions speak louder than words, there must be something behind it.

  34. That is so, becouse, many bosses, think that, psychiatry, is an inborn disease. This is mental illness caused by Anxiety. This mean that, we have to refrain from causing such problems. Its my hope that, The almighty God, will actually guide, protect, preserve, and or keep safe the illedman.

  35. Comment Children need to be taught about love and they must grow seeing it between parents, they absence of love Satan comes in and he comes to stay and these are the fruits of fashion of leaving family on autopilot and busy with artificial happenings

    1. madda says:

      vVery true I like the information shared by Raphael, most of these thing’s are happening due to the development currently the country is undergoing. This is really not normal.

  36. could be that ,just that most of the patients suffering from bipolar depression tend to take their own lives

  37. chichi says:

    it’s true mental health is neglected in MW, we forget that there is no health without mental health.

  38. Big brain says:

    Tinava kuti Inunso ndi a misala a Tenthani

  39. Kenkkk says:

    Totally agree.

  40. vyamuvisulo nthengwa says:

    true and more true, i cant agree more!

  41. chipwidza says:

    So sad!!!

  42. lim says:

    i agree with u on the less concern as nation we have regarding mental health…we tend to show negative attitude to people who are mentally ill and we show less concern to taking care of people who have psychiatric conditions. however, our when u consider the health care system it is all to do with priorities we set; how much do we invest in training and infrastructure for psychiatry. clearly it is lagging behind when u look at the investments elsewhere within the healthcare system and yet as the author alludes to it z indeed a ticking bomb. a lot more people are distressed nowadays and if no interventions are deliberately implemented then wr may be heading towards a catastrophe.

  43. Misala Ilipo says:

    I believe ARVs if taken for too long anthunso akumapenga….

  44. Malawiano says:

    true. enafe tikachitika mwayi timapulumukira ku church. Bible likatipangako comfort basi koma these issues are there koma we dont find health support. Zipatala zipezeke basi zothandiza pa nkhani zoterozo.

  45. Phylord Sefasi says:

    This is an animal behaviour,eish!ana ake omwe.

  46. Ndikutelo says:

    Ralph zoona ngakhale kuti anthu timathamangila kukayezetsa HIV and Aids komano ndithu pakufunika kumayezanso m’mitu kuti tiziona ngati munthu ali bwino chifikwa kupanda kutelo zotsatila zake ndi zoophsya.

  47. Damn says:

    This is not news, this is an opinion. Give us news please.

    1. johnM says:

      Column section is suppose to have opinions you useless dunderhead.

  48. zaoneka sizi says:

    this is true, let alone depression in married women, we just take things for granted- we got ankhoswes whose word is always -kapilileni- tell me are they afraid to tackle the issue or fear of embarrassing the husband if they let go the wife.? or what.
    we got lots of married women suffrind depression alone
    hot issue

  49. che guevara says:

    The sister and the immediate family needs psychiatric care. Two lost brothers and a jailed dad.
    But as said in the article, the health care system doesn’t cater to those needs.

  50. Zithanie [email protected] says:

    Davils work

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