Malawi’s Minister of Internal Affairs, Grace Chiumia, has disowned a letter circulation on social media that she has told the South African Airways and the immigration department that South Africa’s firebrand politician Julius Malema and a Zambian opposition leader Saviour Chishimba have been banned from attending an inaugural conference of political movement Transformation Alliance (TA.
The letter claims that the two leaders were “prohibited immigrants” in Malawi.
But Minister Chiumia said the letter is “fake” and work of propagandists who have forged her signature.
“It is criminal to forge a signature and that letter is not coming from me. The signature has been forged,” Chiumia said in an interview.
“The authorities are investigating the origin of the letter and who forged my signature,” she said.
Chiumia said Malawi government has not banned Malema and Chishimba, saying they were free to enter the country.
Malema, together with Chishimba, were set to take part at TA conference organised by former minister Moses Kumkuyu where they would have been speakers as the movement is set to turn into a political party.
According to The Citizen news of South Africa, Malema was left confused on Thursday after he learnt that he had been banned from Malawi.
“I never spoke good or bad about the government of #Malawi or the president of that country, but I’m told the government of #Malawi banned me,” The Citizen quoted Malema speaking in Limpopo where he was attending a funeral.
His followers asked him when he was scheduled to visit the country, but Malema said even that was not in his plans.
“But for what because I was never scheduled to speak in Malawi.”
Spokesperson for Malema’s party EFF Mbuyiseni Ndlozi has said there was never a plan by Malema to visit Malawi “on the invitation of anyone.”
In Lusaka, Zambia, Chishimba claimed he decided to cancel the trip to Malawi because of what he described as ‘security risks’.
“I was about to leave for the airport a while ago, but I have decided to cancel my travel due to, inter alia, security risks.
“Intelligence information available to me indicates that I may either be refused entry into Malawi or be exposed to the dangerous cartel,” claimed Chishimba in a statement.
But Malawi government spokesperson Nicholas Dausi dismissed claims by the Zambia’s opposition leader as baseless and unfounded.
“The claims are false and baseless, the government of Malawi has nothing against Zambian opposition leader, Chishimba,” said Dausi who is also Minister of Information and Communication Technology.
“The opposition should stop making unnecessary political speculations. Chishimba cancelled the trip because of reasons best known to him,” he added.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :