Police shield regime thugs over Chasowa murder – reports

After a post-mortem report by local pathologist Dr Charles Dzamalala revealed that Robert Chasowa – the fourth year mechanical engineering Polytechnic student found dead on the campus on September 24 – did not commit suicide as claimed by police, blogger Mabvuto Jobani (Jobani is a pseudo) has written a report on Media Institute of Southern Africa (Misa) Malawi discussion forum that says law enforces know regime thugs who had a hand in the murder   but are failing to arrest them.

The report said the agents of the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) were responsible for Chasowa’s murder, citing two undisclosed Blantyre police officers who gave two theories as to why the student activist was murdered.

The first theory according to the police source, is that Chasowa refused to listen to their demands to stop publishing and circulating a newsletter which criticised  President Bingu wa Mutharika administration.

“When he refused, a fight ensued and they beat him up and unintentionally killed him,”  the report, could not be independently verified, said quoting one of the officers.

“The other theory is that he was silenced because DPP knew that the opposition UDF was using him to spread anarchy in the three campuses to incite students to revolt against the government,” said the officers.

“But we definitely know the guys who killed him…there are the same guys who torched Rafiq Hajat’s offices in Blantyre and Rev [Macdonald [ Sembereka’s house in Balaka but the trouble is that we can’t arrest them because they are being protected.”

Police inspector General Peter Mukhito and Commissioner Josse have been implicated that they knew the plot to “silence” Chasowa with assault that resulted to death.

According to a post-mortem report by histopathologist Dr Charles Dzamalala of College of Medicine, Chasowa died from assault to his head inflicted by a blunt instrument or instruments, discrediting police claims that he threw himself from a tall building.

Mukhito: Police knows who killed Chasowa

Chasowa had “severe traumatic intracranial haemorrhage [epidural and subdural] and head injuries with comminuted and depressed fractures to skull bones”, according to Dzamalala’s report.

Reads the report: “Based on the isolated nature of the fresh injuries to the head with prominent parts of the head and the rest of the body spared of these fresh injuries, it is my opinion that these injuries are mostly likely due to assault to the head rather than a fall [suicidal or otherwise].

“This opinion is also in keeping with a consensus from pathologists who evaluated series of cases of head injuries in fatal fall [suicidal, accidental and coeducational] from various heights in order to find common features that favour fatal falls rather than assaults.”

Dzamalala, who conducted the post-mortem in the presence of police officers, noted that there was no opportunity to examine the body at the incident scene as the police had already transferred the body to the mortuary at the time of the request for the autopsy.

The report  noted that Chasowa’s head had  a fresh wound with a transverse length of 6.0 cm, 1.0 cm wide with a central portion that was 2.0 cm wide, uneven margins that exposed a bone.

The head  also had a “comminuted fracture with five fractural lines. The longest extended from the occipital to the base of the right ear, measuring 11.5 cm. The second longest fracture was along the vertex of the head, linear and measured 5.5 cm.”

Reads the report: “This fractural line has one fragment of the fracture slightly displaced into the cranium rendering it a depressed fracture. The other three are smaller fractures and are linking with the longest fracture.

The report further says there was a third poorly defined area of haematoma on the right temporal bone near the right ear; another probable point on impact.

The experienced pathologist said  blood oozed from the nostrils, mouth and ears as well as the wound site and that there were four scratch marks on all the non-prominent areas of the back on either side.

“These scratch marks show no particular pattern, the largest measures 6.0 x 1.5 cm all look traumatic rather than self-inflicted injuries. They do not appear fresh and based on their colour and an attempt at healing, these injuries should be at least three days old,” he said.

Chasowa was involved in the student organisation Youth for Freedom and Democracy (YFD), a movement which opposes the rule of President Mutharika .

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