Peter Mutharika to hand himself in to police: Malawi transition plot

Opposition DPP president Peter Mutharika will hand himself in to police in Blantyre Monday after an arrest warrant has been issued on him in relation to the transition plot when his brother late president Bingu wa Mutharika died after a heart attack last year, his lawyer Chancy Gondwe has confirmed to Nyasa Times.

Police are understood to have the necessary paperwork to arrest Mutharika after they raided his house in the wee hours of Monday.

But lawyer Gondwe said he will be escorting Mutharika to voluntary present himself to police.

“Peter Mutharika is going to the Southern Region Police headquarters by consent,” said Gondwe.

To face the music of justice: Goodall Gondwe (L) and Peter Mutharika
To face the music of justice: Goodall Gondwe (L) and Peter Mutharika

Mutharika’s personal assistant Ben Phiri also confirmed to Nyasa Times that Police raided the house and showed a warrant of arrest but the lawmaker was not at the property.

“Police said they want to arrest Peter Mutharika and we have informed him. He is going to hand himself in to police,” said Phiri.

Earlier, Police arrested former Information Minister Patricia Kaliati, former Local Government Minister Henry Mussa and lawmaker Kondwani Nankhumwa.

Police also picked former presidential guard commander Duncan Mwapasa in connection to events surrounding the death of Mutharika.

Police spokesperson Rhoda Manjolo said they are interested to interrogate them on their key role played  in the failed plot to block President Joyce Banda from ascending to power.

An official commission of inquiry into circumstances leading to the death Mutharika exposed the transitional plot.

The report released last week, highlighted the key role Economic Planning and Development Minister Goodall Gondwe, the Chief Secretray to Office of President and Cabinet (OPC), Bright Msaka, with Mutharika’s brother, Peter played in the failed plot.

Sources said Gondwe was picked for questioning but police  spokeswoman said she could not mention the names of people who have been arrested so far.

“We can confirm the arrest of some people. The investigations are on going. The operation is underway,” said Manjolo.

“This is connection with the ongoing investions following the commission of inquiry on late president Bingu wa Mutharika,” she added.

An inquiry revealed shocking details of how Gondwe, Msaka and Peter Mutharika tried to block Banda from ascending to power circumventing the Constitution.

The inquiry also revealed that Mutharika died on April 5, 2012 on his way to the hospital in the capital Lilongwe and not in South Africa as claimed by government and the late President’s family last year.

The damning report showcased how the three officials flipped flop in their statements made before the Commission when they were asked to explain why the Vice President was kept in the dark about the death of Mutharika.

Msaka still heads of the public service. Many expect the trio to resign because of the damning evidence in the report against them.

According to the Commission of Inquiry Report, when doctors pronounced President Mutharika dead at Kamuzu Central Hospital, Peter Muntharika called Msaka aside and asked him if the Malawi Defence Force would take over.

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