Emotions ran high on Wednesday in the squatter township of Ndirande in Blantyre when members of the Apostolic Church members stormed police station demanding an immediate release of one of the members who was arrested.
Police arrested Zakeyu Mapira, on August 13 2019, and charged him with abduction of a 13-year-old girl and failing to provide necessities to a child.
But Apostolic church members clad in their usual white robes rallied at Ndirande police station with placards demanding the release of their member.
They kept chanting to police officers “Holy Ghost fire!”
Ndirande Police spokesperson, Edna Mzingwitsa, said police dispersed those church members but they said they will come back for vigils.
Mzingwitsa said Mapira was arrested for allowing the marriage of a 13-year-old girl to his 22-year-old son without the consent of the parents of the girl.
“The girl, who is pregnant, was being kept in the church’s tent and her parents were denied a chance to be taking her to the hospital for antenatal care,” she said.
The police spokesperson said Zakeyu Mapira’s son, who has defilement charges to answer, is at large..
Zakeyu Mapira, 42, is from Chalingana Village, Traditional Authority Changata in Thyolo District.