The Evangelical Association of Malawi (EAM), an umbrella body for evangelical churches, has condemned increasing cases of mob justice, saying it is unjustifiable and unacceptable.
EAM general secretary Reverend Francis Mkandawire said the church body worries that several lives have been lost recently through mob justice in the country which is on the increase, claiming life is sacred and that no one has the right to terminate anyone’s life anyhow.
“As Churches we urge all Malawians to avoid taking the law in their own hands to punish suspects in such a manner,” said Mkandawire.
“ We call upon Government to ensure the laws are enforced and that all citizens are protected. Those suspected to have committed crimes should face the law and not mob justice. We call upon religious, traditional and political leaders to educate our people on the evils of this practice.
“Today we are burning suspected thieves; tomorrow we will be burning each other because of petty differences in political, ethnicity or religious affiliations. Let us all join hands to stop this practice in our society. This is a cancer that will affect us all if not strongly checked today,” said EAM.
However, communities have expressed that there is a lax in the laws of Malawi on bringing culprits to book, with the police and the courts seeming to connive with crooks, a things that has seen both petty and organized and syndicated crime rise in the country.
Minister of Home Affairs Uladi Mussa told Nyasa Times that government agrees with the churches, saying individuals should not take the law into their own hands by lynching suspected thieves or criminals.
While admitting though that the country’s policing system is slow, he said that should not serve as a platform for people or individuals to beat suspected criminals.