Kaferapanjira arrested for assaulting Malawi journalist: Charged, out on bail

Police in Malawi’s capital Lilongwe have arrested head of the Malawi Confederation of Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MCCCI) Chancellor Kaferapanjira for allegedly beating up Malawi Institute of Journalism Radio, reporter Anthony Masamba during a radio interview.

Deputy national police spokesperson Kelvin Maigwa confirmed to Nyasa Times on Saturday that  Kaferapanjira was arrested on Friday and was given police bail the same day after charged with malicious damage and common assault.

According to Maigwa, the MCCCI boss is expected to appear before the court soon.

Masamba, bureau chief of  MIJ radio claimed he was assaulted in Lilongwe by Kaferapanjira, during an interview for “Melting Pot,” a new program for the radio station.

(MCCCI) chief executive officer Chancellor Kaferapanjira: Charged

The MCCCI is a partnership of enterprises and associations representing all sectors of the economy in the country.

Masamba had earlier told Nyasa Times that e was punched by Kaferapanjira who was angered by an interview question  about the January 17 anti-government demonstrations.

He asked Kaferapanjira questions about recent news reports that said the government had already overspent its budget and that protests were being planned this month by John Kapito, head of the Consumer Association of Malawi. The demonstrations are intended to highlight the rising cost of basic commodities due to new government reforms.

Masamba said that Kaferapanjira stopped the interview, accused him of being a Kapito supporter, grabbed the recorder, and began punching him in the face, news reports said.

“It was a basic and honesty question but he started beating me up and snatched my recorder then broke it. He accused me of being paid by Mr. John Kapito (Consumers Association of Malawi executive director) to promote the demonstrations,”said Masamba.

“After the interview, I reported the incident to Lilongwe police where I was given an authorization letter to go to the hospital, and I was treated for the wounds and cuts I sustained,” he added.

Steven Chilundu, a reporter for local radio station Capital Radio, said he had accompanied Masamba to the interview and had seen Kaferapanjira assault Masamba.

Kaferapanjira denied hitting Masanba and claimed the reporter was supported by unspecified politicians.

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