Police detain Cdedi leader Namiwa: Malawi activist pleads with MHRC to investigate cops sexual harassment on Thyolo landless people

Malawi Police in Thyolo on Friday detained for 20 minutes the Centre for Democracy and Economic Development Initiatives (CDEDI) executive director, Sylvester Namiwa, just as the activist was about to address landless people at Khonjeni in Thyolo.

Namiwa: Undeterred, writes MHRC

Namiwa was, however, released unconditionally  after being interrogated over his involvement in the land issues concerning the people of Thyolo and Mulanje and the estate owners.

The activist confirmed the development in an interview with Nyasa Times from Thyolo on Sunday.

Namiwa suspected that his detention had to do with the hard stance he has taken against the government’s failure to address grievances of people over land in the two districts.

“Their [police] intention was to block us from addressing the landless people who had gathered at Khonjeni. But after some interrogation, they let me go ahead with my meeting,” he said.

Meanwhile, CDEDI has written the Malawi Human Rights Commission (MHRC), appealing to the State-funded human rights watchdog to investigate alleged police assault, grievous harm, sexual harassment, corporal punishment and subsequent detention of unarmed men and women at Khonjeni and the surrounding villages of Kapichi, Salubeni, Beula and Ngamwani.

The incidents are reported to have happened between November 8-9, 2020.

The CDEDI boss laments in the letter that the acts by the law enforcers have always been intimidatory and dehumanizing to people whose only sin is to press for the reclamation of their ancestral inheritance.

“The most disturbing part of this gross abuse of human rights is that such atrocities were committed by the very same people that were supposed to protect the citizens’ lives and property, the Malawi Police Service. Our findings have revealed that victims are the landless people seeking to reclaim the land owned by General Farming, formerly Press Agriculture. We later discovered that the land was sold to a business mogul….,” reads part of the letter sent to MHRC Executive Secretary Habiba Osman and copied to the Office of the Ombudsman and the Inspector General of the Malawi Police.

MHRC acknowledged receipt of the complaint.

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Che pichesi
Che pichesi
2 years ago

After enjoying poor people taxes at the state house now he wants to look wise. He must reimburse first

2 years ago

Detained is wrong choice of words. I believe police tried to advise him not to use language that may spur people into violent acts. Namiwa has of late been using such language. He advised youths to loot and burn Burundi shops etc. To him, all foreigners doing business in town are living in Malawi illegally

2 years ago
Reply to  Mzozodo

Namiwa where were you pamene chipani chanu cha ku Thyolo komweko chimalamulira ? Iweyo unali busy kupondeledza mutundu wako pano mudachoka mu Boma mwayamba matukutuku, ngati muthu wa nzeru thawi mudalinayo yolanda malo pamene mumalamulira , Chocho ukufuna kukhala ngati wa nzeru pamene ndiwe CADET wachabe chabe , Tenganani pitani ku ma Court ngati mukufuna kulanda minda ya ma estate, osatisokotsera ife tidatopa nanu anthuni kwambiri

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