Malawi Police have arrested nine of its officers in northern border district of Karonga on allegations that they have been pocketing bribes from suspected smugglers of maize and tobacco.
National Police spokesman James Kadedzera confirmed the arrests, saying the officers were manning Kaporo and North Rukuru road blocks.
He said Police “will not shield any officer who comes in conflict with the law.”
The officers are said to have pocketed bribes from illicit traders who were smuggling maize to East Africa.
Recently President Peter Mutharika ordered Malawi Defence Force (MDF) to curb smuggling of maize, ordering all strategic routes to be sealed to ensure that the commodity remains in the country.
Minister of Information and Communications Technology Nicholas Dausi, who is the official government spokesperson, said losing maize to smugglers was tantamount to killing Malawians.
Dausi said the MDF soldiers had been deployed to complement the efforts of the police.
Ministry of Trade, Industry and Tourism spokesperson Wiskes Mkombezi said maize exports are prohibited and those caught exporting will have to face the law.
He said the ban on exportation can only be lifted if Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development advises otherwise on the food situation in the country. He said the Ministry is yet to be advised on crop estimates.