Tumpale released on bail, charged for likening Malawi First Lady to Rango cartoon

Blantyre Magistrate court on Thursday released on bail Ndirande-based young man Tumpale Makibinga facing charges of a meme on social media likening powerful First Lady Gertrude Mutharika to cartoon character Rango.

First Lady Mrs Gertrude Mutharika

Mwakibinga was arrested on Tuesday. He has been charged with insulting the modesty of a woman, cyber violation and offensive communication but he denied all the charges.

He has denied all the charges.

Regional Prosecutions Officer, Dickens Mwambazi, who is representing the State, asked the court to allow the State keep Mwakibinga for seven more days for them to complete investigations.

But defence lawyer Gloria Mbendera said all the alleged offences were bailable.

“First of all, Section 42 (2e) provides for a right to bail to all accused persons. The State has not demonstrated how releasing him would jeorpadise their investigations. Besides, he has already demonstrated that he is a law-abiding citizen by presenting himself to court when he heard that they were looking for him,” she said.

First Grade Magistrate Tsoka Banda said there is “no compelling reason” for denying Tumpale his right to bail.

However,  the court imposed some bail conditions for Mwakibinga  including  paying a non-cash bond of K100 0o0 and not to post anything on social media relating to Mrs Mutharika.

He has been ordered  to  be reporting to Southern Region Police offices once a month and to provide one person as a surety.

The  court has set trial to commence on 31 May 2019.

Civil society organisations (CSOs) under the banner Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC) have condemned the arrest of  Tumpale as an attempt to intimidate people from expressing thoughts in creative ways.

“In this case, the one who was supposed to complain to police would be the designer of the glasses not the first lady. The police have a lot of more important cases they should be looking at such as the killing and abduction of people with albinism,” Mtambo said referring to the meme that had a caption: “When the designer has watched too much Rango”, HRDC Chairperson, Timothy Mtambo,  said.

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PEREMEBNDE
Guest

NANUNSO MUNAVALA BWANJI CHONCHO?

Njolo mpilu
Guest
Njolo mpilu

Tumpale akunama ngati! Dressing ndi ma gogoz sizikugwilizana nta.
Cartoon, clown, scarecrow fits in ndithu.
Tikudikila cothuzi anavala cipewa ngati lettuce cija. Nyau.kkkk

Wiseman
Guest
Wiseman

There are no issues here. These are copy right issues. Rango designer is the one to complain here osati awawa okoperawa. Next time mudzavale bwino mamie kuti anthu asowe chokunenani. Takunyadiranim mamie munatchena kobasi.

Achiswe.
Guest

Released on bail? He should just be released, basi. Don’t we have freedom of speech in Malawi? And in what capacity can the First Lady be described as ‘powerful’? She is simply the wife of the president. Please let’s have some sense of proportion.

Roll Out ATI Now
Guest
Roll Out ATI Now

Police so ya pa Malawi begs a lot to be desired.

Roll Out ATI Now
Guest
Roll Out ATI Now

AH, Getrude wasanduka choopsezera anthu pa Malawi. AMALAWI TIYENI tivotere UTM. Tisinthe zinthu. Tipange Malawi wokomela aliyense. Tiyeni UTM tivotere. Malamulo onse awa opusawa tichotsechotse. Time has come for us to do the right thing. Insulting the modesty of a woman, cyber violation, and offensive communication. NOT GUILTY MY LORD.

Taonani Magalasiwo. Kungokhala ngati choopsezera anthu cheni cheni.

ndangodutsamo
Guest

koma akunama mwanayo kkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk nafwaaaaaaaa

ZINGALUME
Guest
ZINGALUME

31 may ooooh God adzakhala kulibeko, judge wa mnzeru uyu
,

Weretethe
Guest
Weretethe

And the trial will start on 31st May,after the elections! kkkkkkk

Timpudza Mwansambo
Guest
Timpudza Mwansambo

Mmayi we ndi amunako Mr. Ibu nonse ndima cartoon