Front Line Defenders ask Malawi to release 8 Tanzanian ‘spies’

Front Line Defenders, an international human rights organisation, is persuading Malawi government to release of eight Tanzanians languishing in remand custody in Malawi, where they are facing criminal trespass charges.

President Magufuli and President Mutharika: We are cool like that

The Malawian security officers arrested them in December, last year, at the Kayerekera Uranium Mine Site in Karonga where it was initially alleged that the latter were sent by the Tanzania government to investigate if Malawi was manufacturing nuclear weapons.

But Front Line Defenders in a statement made available to Nyasa Times by Advocacy Officer Philip Hoschitiz, said they are  deeply concerned with the physical and psychological integrity of the eight detained Tanzanian nationals.

The organization said that the arrested suspects are the environmental defenders and that their visit in Malawi was part of their normal journey.

“The arrested are all affiliated with various civil society groups, some with initiated a small consortium called Tanzania Uranium Awareness Mission (TUAM) which is platform for knowledge exchange and information sharing in socio-economic and environmental impacts related to mining and extractions,” reads part of the statement.

The statement  said  their cross-learning visit was nothing more than ‘cover for an act of espionage.’

Front Line Defenders further said the life of  the suspects at the Mzuzu Prison are at risk especially because the detention conditions are reported to be characterized by overcrowding, poor sanitation and malnutrition.

“We therefore urge the Malawi government to immediately and unconditionally release the eight Tanzanian human rights defenders,” added the statement.

While the suspects have been charged criminal trespass and spying cases, the Front Line Defenders argued that the group was escorted by five Malawians who were left free at Karonga district police station.

However, Malawi government is yet to issue a comment on the matter.

Meanwhile,  Tanzania’s Foreign Affairs Ministry’s spokesperson Mindi Kasiga  said Dar es Salaam will continue to use diplomacy to negotiate the release of the Tanzanians accused of spying in Malawi.

Malawi Foreign Affars  Ministry sources say there are prospects to release the Tanzanians following  President Peter Mutharika’s bilateral meetings with Tanzania’s President John Magufuli.

Nyasa Times reported about the meeting and posted  pictures of Mutharika and Magufuli sharing light moments after their meeting.

And the social media was awash with the pictures, including those of the two leaders shaking and holding hands in a photo opportunity after the discussions.

A video clip circulating on social media shows both leaders sloganeering, starting with Magufuli saying “Malawi woyee!” and Mutharika reciprocating “Tanzania woyee!.”

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Dr Ima W M S Joe
Guest
tanzania can’t send spies to ‘poor malawi’, if its matter of uranium tanzania has larger uranium deposit than malawi, Also tanzanian economy/gdp ($47bn) is ten times larger than that of malawi ($4bn), as nuclear weapon production needs much funding then what can you do with that $4bn gdp?, and btn you and tanzania who has the ability to produce nuclear weapons? ), do you think its easy like fishing in lake malawi, poor minds!, what leads most if not all malawians’ hearts is hatre against tanzania due to lake nyasa dispute, but you people forget one thing that capturing tanzanian… Read more »
chodibwa
Guest

kUKANAKHALA KU MAYIKO A ALUYA KAPENA ASIA BWENZI ATAPHEDWA KALE KOMA POTI NDI KU MALAWI NDI TULO TATU TOMAGONA EVEN UKUDYA KATUNDU WAMKAZAKO BASI NKHANI ZAKE ZIMAKHALA CHONCHI. asatuluke agaru amenewo chonde APM. DZIKO LINAPELEKA MPHAMVU KUTI USAMALILE MALAWI ZAKA 5 ZI UKACHITA BWINO TIZAKUSANKHANSO 2019. APM UKANGOYELEKEZA KUWATULUSA AGARU A KU TANZANIA WA VOTI YANGA 2019 SINDIZAKUPATSA

Jonathan
Guest

Thats nonses What the FLD saying, we don’t have such organisation in Malawi and how come to say they came for sharing idea with whom, who invited them, how can you enter some body’s property without permision, defend your Tanzania Mr we defending our Malawi don’t take some chances.

Hobbley Gondwe
Guest

Those 8 Tanzania has not tobe release

Hon Pwhisi
Guest

Al-Qaeda Muzuzu has a job for you. 8 silly Taifas must have thier troats slit open this wii deter others with Similar intentions

Sufyaan
Guest

Very bulshit leadership like this. I ever seen b4

Martin
Guest

Fact is that the 8 Tanzanians entered Malawi in a friendly and absolutely legal way officially crossing the border at Karonga – there was no sneaking at all.
All allegations of espionage lacked any facts or even hints from the beginning.
FLD in its statement quotes local medias espionage allegations, but obviously itself is of exactly opposite opinion. Everybody can read himself. To twist someones words in such an obvious and mean way is unbelievable.

Edundu Kabunduli
Guest

At all don’t release them

kaka
Guest

Mukuti ma front liners kaya chiani zawo izo

Mfumuzapansi.
Guest

Very very offensive smell indeed. It is just two or three years ago then these Tayiffa came open that part off our lake is theirs, now they send spys in our country then you NGO and your nonsense president are just laughing hahahaha bullshit poor leadership!

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