President Peter Mutharika has broken his silence on the issue of bloodsuckers that has created tension and fear some parts of the country with close to 12 myth driven killings but accused the opposition political leaders of creating the rumours to cause panic and distress among Malawians.
The President’s sentiments on the issue that has seen some people killed on suspicion that they were bloodsuckers comes after two of his Cabinet ministers – Minister of Information Mark Botomani and Minister of Homeland Security Nicholous Dausi- said when they dismissed the issue as a “myth”.
In his address to the nation on Tuesday evening, Mutharika said the creators of the bloodsucking rumours have vehicles and they move around at night in the Central Region where they intimidate and kill people.
“Some innocent Malawians have been brutally killed in a mob justice because of being suspected to be bloodsuckers. Yet, these rumours are baseless and only deliberately created,” said Mutharika.
He continued: “We had similar rumours last year in the Southern Region as we were moving towards the May election. It was also the same time when some people were deliberately killing men, women and children with albinism with the intention of creating a negative opinion against me and the government.
“They went as far as fabricating a story that some members of my government were selling bones of people with albinism. This was of course a lie.”
Mutharika also connected the rumours to the forthcoming fresh presidential elections.
“We know it is a political strategy for some people to create fear and panic to suppress people from registering. Once again this is happening when we have a collective war against the coronavirus,” said Mutharika.
He then thanked the Malawi police for arresting 158 people suspected of being involved in mob justice and criminal acts related to the blood sucking rumours and political violence.
“Further, I am directing the Acting Inspector General of Police [Duncan Mwapasa] to arrest every single person who is involved in violence related to spreading false rumours of blood sucking and political violence. Criminals must face the law,” said Mutharika.
The President also ordered the Malawi Defence Force to work with the police in intensifying patrol to ensure Malawi remains a country of order and peace.
At least 10 people have been killed in the north in the past three weeks, including two people were murdered in Mzimba around March 23; two people burnt to death in Chitipa around March 25 and one man murdered in Rumphi on 4 April.
In addition, 10 separate violent attacks were reported during the same period in Kasungu, Ntchisi, Dowa, Mchinji, Karonga and Nkhata Bay.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :