The Malawi police over the weekend rounded up over 300 people in a sweeping exercise aimed at bringing sanity and tightening the country’s security.
National police spokesperson Rhoda Manjolo confirmed in a statement issued Sunday – which Nyasa Times has seen – that the exercise was conducted in the districts of Thyolo, Blantyre, Mulanje, Mangochi, Lilongwe, Salima, Mponela in Dowa, Ntchisi and Mzimba, among others.
The people were found loitering in the streets and other residential areas and could not give good reasons for their scampering about at the odd hours, Manjolo said.
“Some of the people who have been arrested are notorious criminals who were on police’s wanted list for committing felonies but were in hiding,” added Manjolo.
According to the publicist, all the 300 plus suspects will answer different charges ranging from robbery with violence, theft, being found in possession of Indian Hemp, rogue, rape and earning a living through prostitution.
Manjolo further said – through her statement – that members of the general public should keep on furnishing the police with genuine tips that can lead to the arrest of notorious criminals.
Ironically, the arrests come barely a week after the gruesome shooting of Ministry of Finance budget director Paul Mphwiyo.
Mphwiyo – currently battling for life in a South African hospital – is said to in a critical but stable condition, according to the Malawi government.
The Budget Director was a victim of “a barbaric and targeted shooting” as he entered his home, the office of President Joyce Banda said in a statement.
Mphwiyo’s shooting “was not just any other robbery but a planned and targeted attack aimed at silencing him and the government in the fight against high levels of corruption and fraud,” the statement said.