Malawi army, police clash with defiant prison warders on strike

There ha sbeen running battles at prisons facilities in Blantyre, Zomba and Mzuzu  where the Malawi Defence Force (MDF)  soldiers and Malawi police are fighting with the striking  prison officers have blocked the roads leading to the prison.

Prison warders  have threatened to open prison gates to free inmates if government fails to address their grievances.

However, at Maula Prison in Lilongwe the situation has been calm.

The junior prison officers who have been holding their  sit-in strike since  Thursday are demanding for promotions, general welfare and their inclusion in the National Response to Coronavirus. as it has done with the MDF, Police and Immigration department.

“We receive about 10 to 15 new prisoners every day but they are not even quarantined ,  we only check their temperature, ” said the Mzuzu prison spokesperson Macbirth Wasambo in an interview.

Wasambo also highlighted that government is yet to honor its decision of pardoning some prisoners to ensure social distance prevention measure.

In Zomba, army soldiers started beating prison officers in order to disperse them.

After managing to disperse them, the soldiers are the ones guarding the prison premises.

The warders warned that they would only resume work once government through the Ministry of Homeland Security responds to their demands dating back to 2017.

“Our colleagues in other security institutions like Malawi Defence Force, Malawi Police Service are promoted every year and I fail to understand why it is so difficult for us,” said one of the warders speaking on condition of anonymity.

“I have worked on the same position for 34 years now and what explanation could be given for such stagnation. What we need now are promotions and not dialogues,” he said.

On the risk allowance, the warders said, just like health workers, they too, are subjected to a group of people who might be infected by the coronavirus.

While government allocated funds to Malawi Defence Force, Malawi Police Service and Immigration Department from the National Response to Coronavirus, prison officer  were sidelined, a development that  irked the officers and triggered the strike.

Malawi Prison Spokesperson, Chimwemwe Shaba said the prison management would do its best to make sure that the concerns of the warders are addressed so that the situation could to normal.

Malawi Inspectorate of Prisons has recommended the release of 184 inmates  but the warders will not release them until their grievances are addressed.

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Nalikangoria
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Nalikangoria

Mpakana Malawi Army kulowera nkhani ya Prison ? NKHONDO YASOWADI ETI? KODI KU MALINDI BWANJI MUKUWOPA MOZAMBIQUE?

Malawi belong to the citizens
Guest

When President choose cadets to lead these security agencies, Ndimomwe zimakhalira, MYP yinatha zinthu zake ndi zomwezo, poor leadership.Anthu omwe amagwira mifuti sibwino Kuti ena azipangidwa favour.Mudzaphetsa anthu.

Chinsapato cha Mrs Chakwera
Guest

Young pioneer lelonso ?? Musatinyase. Kumakangovina Nyau uko. Kupusa eti. That evil shit god forbid should be erased from Malawi’s history. Nyasi, mabi.

MATHIAS
Guest
MATHIAS

Dyela la akumupando kutiko mufufuze mupezeka kuti wina wake yemwe sadziwa mkomwe zachitetezo watapa za mbili kwabasi osunga akaidi amaika miyoyo Yao pa chiospyezo

Wakwithu
Guest
Wakwithu

Kikikikiki

Pano akuti all prison warders promoted

Malawi sazatheka ndithu….is that how people get promoted

Jose
Guest
Jose

Very wrong corrupse of government security institution fighting.Army showing cadet unprofessionalism.Warning to MDF and Police cadets follow constutionalism. By the supreme law our constitution created three security institutions.prison service,police service,and Defence forces.They have different mandate,roles and duties.The have derrent legal framework.police Act,Prisons Act and Army Act.Police is not prison prison is not police,Army is not police neither police is Army.A police officer escorts a remanded person or convicted person to prison for prison to keep them.Police or Army can not double their work as police and prison that is unconstitutional.An Army officer is not trained to take statements investigating criminal… Read more »

Kandulu
Guest
Kandulu

Excellent piece Jose. Well written. The Prof of Law has no idea what he is up against.

Gabor
Guest
Gabor

Eish big up Jose

anamkafumbwe
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anamkafumbwe

u very true boss

Ruben kacheche
Guest
Ruben kacheche

Ndiye wina akasuma aziti court is biased when it’s clear in the laws. Osakamenya ma nurse ali pa strike as well

Gabor
Guest
Gabor

Ana achepa mpaka kumenyana okhaokha so manyapala pamenepa adziopa ndani ma prison Warder ndi alonda kapena naonso went to school and training I don’t understand this. So a police wo or Army anatumidwa or chani ? Bwanji sanamenye ma nurses and doctors on strike . Koma boma ili la DPP I totally don’t understand it.

Kambewa Chisale
Guest

Koma
If you are not careful APM you will end up just like Savimbi

Sigweje
Guest

Nanunso apolisi ndi a malawi defence force mukumenya amzanu ngati inuyo zanu zili bwino.Anthu oti nanunso akakukwezani pa udindo ndiye kuti mukudziwana ndi bwana wina wake.Masalary anu ndi omvetsa chisoni ndipo akakhala apolisi ngati adya bwino ndiye kuti agwira private kapena kupempha anthu amagalimoto mukakhala pa road block. A malawi defence force ngakhale mumachita matama koma ndinu anthu omvetsa chisoni.Anachita bwino kukutsisirani ma allowance a ku peace keeping Ku DRC.

Piper
Guest
Piper

I always thought MDF were in a different league. Seeing them being dragged into a muddy tussle with their fellow security personnel is a shame and unbelievable. Especially when they have had their share of the Covid 19 allowances and PPE. All prison officers are asking for is PPE so they can do their jobs safely and you beat them up for it. Just because MDF carry some weapons now they feel they can intimidate everyone? You are being used by the blue machine. Shame on you !

TooLegitToQuit
Guest
TooLegitToQuit

Of course they were in a different league until Nundwe was removed. The new boy is a DPP stooge.

Malawi belong to the citizens
Guest

Just promote them.They are Malawians too.Please do not favour police officers and soldiers only everyone is important in the country.Looking after akayidi sichinthu chamasewera.Mwina boma likufuna akayidi onse adzatulitsidwe tsiku lina.Kudzachematu.Treat prison warders with respect they are police officers too.They do have guns and teargas too.

nyopani
Guest
nyopani

Change is around the corner

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