Malawi flagship daily newspaper, The Daily Times on Wednesday published an editorial comment condemning police brutality and excessive use of force to suspects after the paper reported that cops in Ntcheu assaulted Zakaria Malata, 49 to death in a bid to obtain a confession of guilt.
Malata was arrested on June 8, 2016 over allegations of stealing 12 bags of maize and was caged at Senzani police station.
His relation Lawrence Chaziya told the paper that before his death at Ntcheu District Hospital, he told him that he was assaulted by police officers identified as Sub-Inspector Chimoto, Constable Tonza and Constable Kachigamba.
The editorial of Daily Times said Ntcheu matter is a “tip of the iceberg” as similar incidents might go unreported across the country.
The paper said police brutality was similar to mob justice, saying every person deserves a fair trial and that it is only the courts that prove one guilty or not.
The daily described the development as “worrisome”, saying police officers must conduct in a manner in which every member of the society can trust them.
The paper urges authorities to crack down on police brutality and punish those suspected of torture or ill treatment of suspects.
“We cannot afford to have a country where police officers are happy to eliminate the lives of the citizens,” reads the editorial.
Spokesperson of Ntcheu Police station Gift Matewere is quoted saying the police officers mentioned have been called for “interrogations.”