In a bid to crack down on the illegal sell of liquor spirits packed in plastic bottles, police in conjunction with the Malawi Bureau of Standards (MBShas burnt K6 million worth of the beverage and also destroyed various products which were found counterfeit while others were found passed their expiry date in different shops within Lilongwe.
The Burundian–Ndiho Alphonse–and a Malawian–Alex Paul–were arrested and later released on bail for being owners of the illicit beer nicknamed ‘kill me fast’ for quickly getting people drunk. The beer is mostly sought after by low income earners..
The two have since been fined K500 000 for contravening the MBS Act Number 14 of 2012 and the subsequent ban of the spirits packaged in illegal plastic bottles.
If found guilty, the two are likely to serve three years in jail
Chikwawa police station publicist Foster Benjamin told Nyasa Times that the products were intercepted by officers manning the checkpoint at Thabwa in the district.
“A total of 300 cartons which comprised of 1,200 bottles of the illicit beer were set alight between the grounds of district council and police in an operation which had attracted scores of people,” he said.
He said according to an official from MBS, the two are likely to serve three years in jail.
In Lilongwe, police destroyed some of the expired products which includes Heins tinned beans, mayonnaise, biscuits, Ingram’s Camphor Creams, Monis grape juice, Jungle Oats, Halls fruit juice and dish-wash liquid.
The Police intercepted the counterfeit products during an exercise popularly termed AFIYA; a Swahili term which means health.
The cops carried out this operation in various locations within the city such as Chigwirizano, Area 24, Chinsapo, and Mtandire.
The Police carried out the operation in collaboration with other stakeholders such as Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA), Copyright Society of Malawi (COSOMA), Malawi Bureau of Standards (MBS), and Pharmacy Medicines and Poisons Board.
According to Central Region Police Spokesperson, Superintendent Nolliettie Chihana Chimala, several individuals were arrested for various offences during the exercise.
“We have managed to arrest 12 suspects with different offences such as piracy, found in possession of counterfeit products, operating business without documents, conducting pharmacy business without license,” she said.
Some of the suspects arrested were identified as Eunice Phande 33, from Devete village, Traditional Authority (TA) Chindi, Mzimba, Ken Nyirenda 33, Chiweta village, TA Mwamulowe, Rumphi, Abel Chande 25, Mwauluka village TA Makanjira, Mangochi.
Madalitso Gauti 21, Liphava Village, TA Makwangwala, Ntcheu, Somaliya Elias 20, Juma village, T/A Liwonde, Machinga; Maliamu Jafali,30 years, Jumbe village, TA Makanjira, Mangochi, Steila Masada 25, Kawiya village, TA Malili, Lilongwe, Mwai Dila, 29, Mew village, TA Mwambo, Zomba,
John Mayeso 40, Misolo village, TA Chowe, Mangochi, King Jelomy 40, a Democratic Republic of Congo citizen Rodrick Ntchomo 30, Mtambo village, TA Kabudula, Lilongwe and Yamikani Nawanga, 25 years, Chimpesa village, TA Mpama, Chiradzulo.
In a separate interview with one of the business lady who opted not to be named said they operating a business without documents in Area 24 markets in the city because it is expensive to have documents such as business license.—Additional reporting by Daniel Namwini, ManaFollow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :