The United Nations (UN) has suggested that an independent body should investigate serious allegations of police rape of women and girls at Nsundwe in Lilongwe.
UN country coordinator Marie Jose-Torres said an independent probe would bring trust and ensure that the inquiry outcome is accepted by all.
The police say they have instituted their own inquiry into the allegations following an outcry from women and children rights activists as well as foreign governments.
Torres also asked for the protection of the alleged victims.
“There is need to protect the victims of the sexual assault to avoid being re-victimised,” she said.
Sandra Paesen, the EU ambassador to Malawi condemned the alleged sexual violence and called for “light to be shed on what happened.”
The British high commissioner to Malawi, Holly Tett, also called for a thorough investigation. She said: “The UK believes that the best way to restore the police and public trust is through a thorough investigation.”
Earlier this month demonstrators set up roadblocks in the capital, which led to the deployment of the police. In the pandemonium that followed, a police officer was killed. Security officers stormed the area the following day, spraying teargas and attacking the public and the sexual assault allegedly happened during that time.
The NGO Gender Coordination Network (NGO-GCN) documented accounts from women and girls who said they had been sexually assaulted by police officers.
“While NGO-GCN advocate justice on the case [the killing of the police officer], the network is disturbed with reports that some of the police officers dispatched in the area … raped women, defiled self-boarding girl students, tortured people and looted private property,” read its report.
The report, which described how police officers threw teargas and broke into houses, demanded that the President and other authorities ensure the allegations were thoroughly investigated and perpetrators punished. “ No one is above the law and the rule of law must be respected,” said the report.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :