Malawi ruling PP says T/A Bvumbwe ‘chillaxing’ not hiding

Malawi’s ruling People’s Party (PP) has dismissed reports that Traditional Authority (T/A) Bvumbwe in Thyolo is hiding after receiving death threats, saying the youthful chief may be on vacation elsewhere.

T/A Bvumbwe, who has crossed paths with PP over remarks at the funeral of High Court judge Joseph Manyungwa attended by President Joyce Banda on Sunday, went into “hiding” after claiming that he was being death threatened.

Scores of subjects of T/A Bvumbwe marched to Bvumbwe Police Station where they demanded an explanation on the whereabouts of their chief and also accused the PP for forcing the chief into hiding.

But PP spokesman Hophmally Makande on Friday dismissed the reports that the chief was hiding and living dangerously.

Makande: T/A Bvumbe not in hiding but chillaxing
Makande: T/A Bvumbe not in hiding but chillaxing

“It is not correct to sat T/A Bvumbwe is hiding. He is not, perhaps he is on vacation,  akuchita phala ,” said Makande.

Makande said PP has not intimidated the chief and they would not threaten his life at all.

“We cannot threaten the chief,” he said.

But the chief’s uncle, Sailous Bvumbwe said the family is worried that T/A Bvumbwe is “still missing.”

He said: “We don’t know his whereabouts.”

The chief’s aunt Joyce Maliro also expressed concern with the safety of the T/A Bvumbwe.

“We are concerned with his safety because the ruling party officials are bent to harm him,” she said.

But PP officials have accused opposition Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) of fermenting the fear amongst the Bvumbwe subjects, saying they were “politicising it”.

The singled out local lobbyist Maria Ndasowa Mainja, a DPP activist for mobilising people to match in Bvumbwe.

Ndasowa Mainja however said although she is a member of DPP, she was involved as a resident of Bvumbwe and a longtime friend of the chief.

Thyolo district commissioner (DC) Lawford Palani the chief reported that he was getting death threats and insults from unknown people.

During the funeral service of the late Manyungwa, Bvumbwe told the President that he was disappointed with the distribution of PP T-shirts at the funeral.

He openly told the President that it should never happen again and that if the party officials wanted, they could organise political rallies where they can freely distribute the T-shirts.

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