Malawi junior ministers harass Nyasa Times reporter

Deputy Minister of local government, Godfrey Kamanya and Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Food Security Ulemu Chilapondwa on Monday intimidated and harassed Lilongwe-based Nyasa Times journalist, Chancy Namazunda.

The two deputy ministers harassed the reporter at the funeral ceremony of Senior Chief Chadza’s wife, who is from Lilongwe Msozi constituency of Kamanya.

Namazunda who was asked by the bereaved family to take some pictures for the family to give senior chief Chadza who missed the funeral as he was reported to be in China.

But as the procession started from the house to the graveyard, Kamanya and Chilapondwa summoned Namazunda and instructed TA Masumbankhunda to threaten the Nyasa Times journalist not to take more pictures.

Chilapondwa: We will deal with Nyasa Times reporters

After explaining to them that he was asked by the family to take the photos, the two deputy ministers started to threaten Namazunda.

Kamanya: Annoyed with Nyasa Times

“This is the boy who has been writing bad things for the People’s Party and me in particular,” claimed highly charged Kamanya.

“I have been watching you for so long and this time I am taking you to task,” he said.

Then Chilapondwa warned to “deal” with the journalist and other Nyasa Times correspondents.

Nyasa Timed editorial directors have since urged the deputy ministers to halt their attempts to intimidate journalists from the publication/

“If they feel we are unfair to them, we are always ready to discuss our reportage. To date, we have not received any complaints from the deputy ministers.”

Nyasa Times reminded the ministers it is the job of journalists to hold those elected into positions of power accountable.

Controversial

Recently Kamanya apologised publicly for his disrespectful remarks he made against Kamuzu Central Hospital (KCH) workers who marched and protested over the shortage of medical supplies, including medications.

Garrulous Kamanya claimed at a presidential political rally that “all those going to Parliament to hand out the petition are members of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP).”

One of the medical personnel William Banda, branded the minister’s outburst “extraordinarily stupid”.

And other workers suggested that Kamanya should resign.

Kamanya was forced on his knees and apologised for his remarks.

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