Ombudsman hits back at Minister after challenging MHRC Msundwe report

Ombudsman Martha Chizuma has hit back at  Minister of Information, Civic Education and Communications Technology Mark Botomani, who is also government spokesperson, claims that Malawi Human Rights Commission (MHRC) report on rape incidents allegedly committed by police officers around Msundwe area in Lilongwe can be challenged.

Ombudsman Chizuma: Which Constitution the minister is reading?
Botomani: Any action bhy MHRC in the absence of a fully-fledged commission will have to be subjected to scrutiny by State institutions such as the courts.

Botomani said  MHRC does not have commissioners and  Ombudsman Martha Chizuma and the Law Commissioner Rosemary Kanyuka, who conducted the investigation and released the report in Lilongwe last Wednesday, were only acting as MHRC advisers and not commissioners.

However. Ombudsman said she was “not sure which Constitution the minister is reading where it refers to [me] and the Law Commissioner as advisers of MHRC”.

In quotes reported by The Nation newspaper,  Chizuma said: “What I know is that by Section 130 of the Constitution currently in use in Malawi, the Law Commissioner and myself are commissioners of MHRC. I know a few people have raised this issue before but my view based on the reading of the Constitution is that by making the Law Commissioner and Ombudsman as commissioners, the law never envisaged complete lacunae in the commission, considering that human rights violations never wait for full commission.”

The Ombudsman further said it was her view that all interventions they were making are covered under Section 42 of the Interpretation Act.

“Let me add here that I do not, in anyway, mean that full commission is not required. We need full commission because myself and Law Commissioner can only do so much.

“At the moment, there is so much that needs to be done at MHRC requiring full commission whose appointment awaits Executive action.But until then as commissioners, we cannot keep quiet on these serious human rights issues that keep on coming up in this country,” she said.

In their report, Chizuma and Kanyuka said they established that police officers raped 13 women, defiled one girl and sexually assaulted three under-18 girls during their October 8 2019 operation around the area.

The report says the police officers committed the incidents as the women fled violent scenes

MHRC recommends that acting Inspector General of Police Duncan Mwapasa should institute criminal investigations into the matter, targeting police officers deployed at Mpingu and M’bwatalika whose teams were led by Superintendent Kantchowa, Msukwa and Inspector Chipofya.

The commission also recommends  that there should be reconciliation between police and the people of Msundwe, Kadziyo, M’bwatalika and Mpingu areas.

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masoambeta
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masoambeta

MARK BOTOMANI KUDA NGATI MPHIKA OKAZINGILA MACHEMDE A MBEWA.

Jose
Guest
Jose

Do not play with human rights reports.Msundwe case is crimes against humanity surely police officers involved will be prosecuted.This can even be prosecuted at Hague.Remember DRC case where a general was sentenced to 20 years for rape and murder the same case as the Msundwe.The charges are placed on senior officers.Its up to them to find the culprits otherwise they will face the charges themselves.wait and see.

Tizanka
Guest
Tizanka

Rest in power Usamani Imedi, I can imagine how you felt when the fist stone hit you, how powerless you felt when you understood that your life would live you that day. I can’t imagine how you felt about how your relatives would hear about your passing. I wish you were as important as the Chewas

Mbonga Matoga
Guest
Mbonga Matoga

Nobody is suggesting that the killing of mr imedi was not a criminal offence …..the problem here is that the DPP cadet police force used the killing of mr imedi as an excuse to rape the msundwe women. And as result instead of us talking about the killing of an innocent police officer we are now talking about the rape issue becoz this is not only a human rights violation Issue but also a police brutality and mob justice issue. It is the same police that preaches to all Malawians not to do mob justice to criminals becoz everyone is… Read more »

Tizanka
Guest
Tizanka

Can we also investigate the death of this human being in the same vain? Can we have the same outrage or the “cadet Imedi deserved it” Imedi had it coming right? So cadets should be butchered? Where is the outrage for his death? Let’s say it’s time to kill all the cadets, did we have evidence for this noble act of killing the suspected cadet, was he indeed the cockroach kadet that needed extermination?

BigMan
Guest
BigMan

The police investigated and arrested people who were involved in the killing of the late officer. They actually arrested and tortured many innocent people, but not a single policeman has even been questioned over the gangraping of innocent schoolgirls.

No policeman, whether Muslim or Christian is above the law nor has more rights than any other Malawian. Get it through your thick skulls.

Kharupa
Guest
Kharupa

My friejd, there is a 99.99 percent likelihood these so called victims were paid so that the nation’s focus will be on the alleged rape and not the cold blooded murder of a police officer. If people can be so heartless as to kill a fellow human being lying will be a walk in the park for them.

Lego
Guest

Imedi died on the line of duty so and he signed to the law whereby this issue is about crime against humanity.Learn and understand the laws please

BigMan
Guest
BigMan

You are clearly dull.

Honestly
Guest
Honestly

This mentality of doing things inorder to be in good books with those in leadership is killing Malawi. The women were raped, impregnated as well as infected with sti may be HIV too. And a Minister , who is supposed to be there working for people is fighting hard to save his job, no morals. Just because these women are poor and cannot afford to take you and the police to court , you can come out and start vomiting foul smelling rubbish. If your Mother, daughters, sisters went through the same, will you vomit that rubbish? We have women… Read more »

Concerned citizen
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Concerned citizen

Zoona Mulungu akuona zonsezi ndipo nthawi yatsala pang’ono kuti aliyense anapanga rape ana, atsikana ndi azimayi osaukawa mudzina lobwezera imfa ya Sumani Imedi kuti alandile zilango zawo. Sikale nfikubwerezanso, ndiposachedwapa awona mkono wa Chauta ukuwakantha mmodzimmodzi. Mulungu akutero. Habbakuk, Habbakuk, Habbakuk.Alape ndithu ndipo asabisale kuyesa kuti a chenjera. Anaputa mkwiyo was Chauta. Zomvetsa chisoni. Mulingo…….

Peter T
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Peter T

Let Ombudsman office do their Work and we Begg this office not tolerate any Stupid idea or stupid point from who ever minister is. Mr Mike Botomani deal with problems which you have in your Department stop fit yourself other peoples offices. Remember your officer has problem if not paying people go and deal with that problem .

BigMan
Guest
BigMan

Another useless minister defending police rape. Is this really a government?

Nzika
Guest
Nzika

I wonder the same thing. It’s very unfortunate to have such a comment coming from a cabinet minister which by implication coming from government. I simply don’t understand the way this government handles state matters. It behaves like an NGO

CRIMINAL MINDED
Guest
CRIMINAL MINDED

Mack Bottom man another Dick sucker’s of this bushirt government he is just barking everything with out any proper knowledge of it stupids idiot Fool

Chingaipe
Guest
Chingaipe

Kuchita ndale ndi miyoyo ya anthu !!! Ndiye ndi Bakili regime mwasiyana pati ? and more especially with the law guru at the helm My foot. By now we should have seen the benefits of having a law proffessor at the helm …

Tuvitwana
Guest
Tuvitwana

CADET Minister, what can he say?

Prophet Justice
Guest
Prophet Justice

Brother Botomani, the writing is on the wall: you have lost sanity and spiritually you are now drained. Be very careful rest you will used and dumped. If you think this is a joke, ask Sajeni Songazaudzu

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