President Peter Mutharika has assured police officers that he has their welfare at heart so that they can execute their duties with utmost comfort.
Speaking at police headquarters in Lilongwe when he officially received 100 police vehicles from the People’s Republic of China, Mutharika said his concern of how police officers execute their duties is what prompted him to ask for vehicles from the Chinese Government so that mobility should be made easy for them.
“I was asked by the Chinese Ambassador to give him a request of anything I wished the Chinese Government to do for the Malawian people. I did not hesitate, I quickly responded and asked for police vehicles, because police officers protect us, therefore, transport is very important,” he said.
He said the police could not function without an efficient transport system, adding that the vehicles would help in crime management and also help in quick response to crime calls.
Mutharika called for care and fair distribution of the vehicles to police stations in the country.
The Malawi leader thanked the Chinese government for the donation adding that the vehicles will help boost security in the country by reducing transport challenges within the Malawi Police Service.
Mutharika hailed China for the support it has rendered to Malawi in the ten years of diplomatic relationship.
“The relationship between China and Malawi dates back to December 2007, I was among delegates that travelled to China to negotiate the commencement of the bilateral relationship between the two countries.
“Since then, the relationship has been fruitful evidenced by developmental projects like Malawi University of Science and Technology (MUST), Bingu International Convention Centre (BICC) and the new Parliamentary building,” he explained.
According to the president, government is planning to engage in road rehabilitation projects, construction of 10 000 staff houses for police, prison, army and immigration officers as well as improving transportation challenges in the other three remaining security departments.
“These vehicles will make our police more efficient and highly responsive. We have had transport challenges in the police service, we appreciate the timely support from Chinese government,” he said.
Chinese deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Chen Xiaodong, said the handing over of the 100 vehicles signifies the good relationship between the two countries.
He said: “More and more Chinese are coming to Malawi for investment and as tourists, we are committed to boosting security in this country for the benefit of people from both nations.”
He added:“The vehicles have been specifically crafted for security purposes because they have built-in communication radios and other technical machineries that aid police transportation while they are exercising their duties.”
Chinese deputy minister assured the Malawi Government that the cordial relationship that has existed between the two countries for the past decade will continue with other important developmental projects.
The police vehicles which have accessories such as ambers and two-way radio systems have come with spare parts estimated to last up to two years.
They include 10 minibuses, 60 pickups, 15 saloon and 10 wagons.
For his part Inspector General of Police Lexten Chamama promised to take good care of the vehicles.