Saturday, October 31, 2009

Bakili Muluzi in motor vehicle theft, Hammer

Picture of a hammer look-alike vehicle that Bakili Muluzi stole in 2008 from South Africa. We hope the long arm of the Law will catch-up with Muluzi on his thefts.

By Emmanuel Sobilika

Former President of the Republic of Malawi Bakili Muluzi has been sponsoring a group of armed bandits that have been car jacking motor vehicles in South Africa and later sold them to Muluzi and his family in Malawi, Malawi Digest can reveal.

Malawi Digest has overwhelming evidence that some of Muluzi’s vehicles that he has been using between 2004 and now were actually stolen and the former Malawi leader bought them clandestinely.

We have a list of Muluzi’s personal motor vehicles that Malawi Police authorities and the International Police (Interpol) are investigating to have been possibly illegally bought.

Some of those vehicles under investigations include two Benz saloon vehicles, a hammer, a Lexus and three Toyota vehicles.

Malawi Digest
Police sources have disclosed that investigations are at an advanced stage linking former President Muluzi to this ring of motor vehicle thefts.

One of the vehicles under investigations is a Hammer that Muluzi brought into Malawi in 2008 for his personal use for the 2009 Presidential and Parliamentary Election campaign.

Only a week after the vehicle was stolen at gun-point in South Africa, the vehicle was swiftly moved into Malawi by Bakili Muluzi through his agents involved in this ring of thefts.

Malawi Digest has learnt that, the Hammer, black in colour first arrived in Malawi on 29th March, 2008 at around 3.00 pm through Dedza Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA) border post.

The driver of the vehicle and his colleague demanded from customs officials to allow the vehicle temporary entry into Malawi.

The officials at the post are reported to have refused to do so saying they could not do so because the vehicle showed the importer was Bakili Muluzi and that temporary entry permits are only given to foreigners who want to use their vehicles in Malawi for a short period and then get them out.

The man driving the vehicle is reported to have been furious about this and immediately contacted Muluzi by telephone explaining the situation.

Muluzi, the opposition UDF national chairman is reported to have then issued fresh instructions to ‘his boys’ to go back into Mozambique and re-appear again with the vehicle at another border post during which time, he would make sure that there is a listening customs border official.

True, the vehicle re-appeared again the following day morning, the 30th of March, 2008 at Mwanza MRA border post.

An MRA officer who was not expected on duty (name withheld) surprisingly reported for work and it was him who gave the ‘Muluzi boys’ a temporary entry for the vehicle to allow it proceed to Muluzi’s BCA Hill residence in the commercial city, Blantyre.

The MRA official gave the ‘Muluzi boys’ TIP MWA 1000048853 of 30th/03/08 and the document showed that it was to expire on 29th April, 2009.

Details of the stolen Bakili Muluzi imported vehicle were; Hammer, station wagon, model H3, black in colour, Registration WKK 50 GP, engine no M74393463, year of make 2007, chassis number ADMDNI3X 74393463.

At the day of entry in Malawi, the vehicle’s mileage was put at 213 140 and its value was put at R1, 000,000.00

Our sources have disclosed that the vehicle was driven into Malawi by Mr Enock Chibwana Bello who was travelling on a Malawi passport number Mw 122935 and gave his address in South Africa as 88 California Road, RSA.

The driver also had a South African identity whose details are 74 107 742 185.

He gave his address in Malawi as Post Office Box 212, Blantyre.

After being given temporary entry into Malawi, the vehicle was driven to Muluzi’s BCA Hill residence where he started using it instantly.

Though given temporary entry into Malawi, Muluzi started using the vehicle illegally when he put personalised numbers on the Hammer.

He was on several occasions seen at political rallies driven in this state of the art Hammer numbered ‘BM’.

One of the biggest events where Muluzi used this vehicle illegally was during the opposition UDF national convention in April, 2008 where he was endorsed at Presidential candidate for the 2009 general elections.

It is illegal under Malawi customs laws to give another person or sell a vehicle that is under temporary entry into Malawi.

So legally, Muluzi should not have had in his custody this vehicle but rather it should have been driven in Malawi by the driver, Mr Enock Chibwana Bello.

Former President Muluzi was approached by MRA officials about this illegal use of the vehicle but Muluzi is reported to have rendered a deaf ear.

It was in the course of these running battles between Muluzi and MRA officials that Interpol contacted their Malawian counterparts that they had just received information that a stolen South African vehicle fitting the descriptions of the Hammer driven by Muluzi had been traced into Malawi.

An official involved in the investigations of the stolen vehicle is reported to have betrayed his colleagues by tipping Bakili Muluzi on the impending raid on his residence over the vehicle.

Bakili Muluzi is reported to have swiftly moved out of Malawi the vehicle back to South Africa.

When Interpol visited Muluzi’s BCA Hill residence, they found the vehicle long gone.

Meanwhile, Malawi Digest has a list of people that have been supplying Muluzi with these stolen vehicles however we are not going to publish their names at this stage as we do not want to compromise Police investigations.

Former president Bakili Muluzi has a taste for fancy and beautiful vehicles but little did Malawians know that some of them were actually stolen elsewhere-Malawi Digest.

Dr Mutharika back home, hails award

Presidential guard of honour: Malawi President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika inspecting a guard of honour on a rainy day at Chileka International Airport in Blantyre soon after landing from South Africa.

By Our Reporter

Malawi’s Head of State Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika has arrived back home speaking highly that the recognition foreign organizations and individuals have on the country’s leadership should serve as motivation to all Malawians to continue working hard to further improve living their standards.

He was speaking on Friday to journalists at the Chileka International Airport in the commercial city, Blantyre soon after landing from a two day trip to South Africa.

Dr Mutharika had gone there to receive and award from the Southern Africa Trust.

“I will be urging Malawians to continue working hard and to commit themselves to national development since the future of Malawi remains in our hands,” he told journalists.

President Dr Mutharika has been awarded the 2009 Drivers of Change Award for his outstanding leadership. He appealed for total support from the private sector so that the country continues to develop.

The Southern Africa Trust and Mail and Guardian Newspapers of South Africa give the award annually to outstanding African leaders and individuals.

President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika is the first sitting Head of State in Africa to receive the award.

Dr Mutharika said Malawi would achieve the Millennium Development Goals by the stipulated time frame since the goals were in tandem with the Malawi Growth and Development Strategy whose objectives are similar.

“While implementing the MDGS, the country is at the same time tackling the Millennium Development Goals since the core aim of the strategies is to fight poverty,” he said.

Commenting on the country’s infrastructural development, Dr Mutharika bemoaned sub-standard structures being erected in the country’s cities. He called on those involved to replace the structures with buildings which will match the country’s economic growth.

“Malawi is for Malawians, and we must take responsibility to develop this country for the future generations to appreciate our contribution,” he said.

He appealed to authorities responsible for granting licenses for construction of buildings in the cities to approve only those plans with modern and tall structures rather than single storey structures-Malawi Digest.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Nyasatimes lies against the Mutharikas

Professor Peter Mutharika: Am happy with what I am doing at the moment. Pic by Malawi Digest.

By Emmanuel Sobilika

Malawi’s online propaganda tool, Nyasatimes is at it once again lying against State President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika and his brother Professor Arthur Peter Mutharika, Malawi Digest understands.

Professor Mutharika, the State President’s brother is Malawi’s Minister of Justice and Constitutional Affairs.

Nyasatimes which receives financial backing from failed Malawi politician Bakili Muluzi has once again repeated their lies against the country’s Head of State.

In their latest publication, Nyasatimes has alleged that Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika recently summoned traditional leaders from the southern region to Sanjika Palace where it is alleged by the Muluzi boys that Professor Mutharika, was endorsed and sold to the chiefs as the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) presidential candidate for 2014.

In their propaganda report, Nyasatimes alleged the chiefs were being forced to support and sell Professor Mutharika in their daily activities.

However, investigations by Malawi Digest have revealed that some moving to Blantyre over two weeks ago, President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika has met people at Sanjika Palace in groups on four occasions only.

These functions are when he signed the SADC protocol on gender, the State Luncheon with former First Minister of Scotland Sir McConnell, the swearing in of Supreme and High Court judges and the latest one being today, Friday, when the State President launched the Macoha flag week soon after landing in the country from South Africa.

Malawi Digest has investigated on all the people that went through the gates of Sanjika Palace to meet the State President and none on that list, is a traditional chief that met the Malawian leader.

Apart from the groups that we have stipulated above, there is no any other group that went to meet Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika.

Nyasatimes, which often times survive on lies and rumours, has not mentioned the alleged chief or chiefs that were in this group to Sanjika Palace.

They have also not specified on the dates this alleged group met the State President at Sanjika Palace.

The story therefore alleged by Nyasatimes is in this case concluded to be a lie against the State President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika and his brother Professor Peter Mutharika.

Speaking in an interview with Malawi Digest on Friday afternoon, Justice Minister Professor Mutharika said he could not comment on the allegations published by the Nyasatimes.

“I have always said that I am still learning in my job as Parliamentarian for Thyolo East and as the country’s Minister of Justice and Constitutional Affairs,” he said.

The highly qualified international lawyer said that the two jobs above are enough to keep him pre-occupied for the time being and nothing else.

In a related development, another senior government official has dismissed claims by the same propaganda tool that Gender Minister Patricia Kaliati, cried and apologised to fellow cabinet ministers at a recent cabinet meeting.

The official condemned the lies that have been cooked against Kaliati and the cabinet saying the incident as per alleged by Nyasatimes never took place.

The information we have received on the alleged cabinet meeting, the said incident never took place and several reliable cabinet ministers have collaborated our findings.

It is there clear that the two reports published by Nyasatimes are both just lies aimed at tarnishing images of the people being mentioned in the fabrications.

Since being elected as Member of Parliament for Thyolo East and Malawi’s Justice and Constitutional Affairs Minister, Professor Arthur Peter Mutharika’s name has been on the lips of many Malawians.

He has on several occasions said it point blank that he is satisfied with what he is doing at the moment.

The ruling Democratic Progressive Party is yet to have a convention where a presidential candidate for 2014 is expected to be elected and endorsed by the party’s officials from through out Malawi.

This is not the first time that Nyasatimes under the sponsorship of Bakili Muluzi has cooked up lies against President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika and his relatives- Malawi Digest.

Dr Mutharika honoured in South Africa

By Muyanga Ziba

Malawi State President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika said, Thursday, Southern Africa needs to change in the way of doing business as the rest of the world is now changing.

He said this in Johannesburg, South Africa, after accepting the Drivers of Change Award in the government category.

“It is only those who adapt or manage change that can survive and make a positive contribution to the world”, he said.

He said with the assistance of the agricultural targeted input subsidy programme which his government introduced four years ago, Malawi has been transformed from being a food deficit and hungry nation to a food surplus nation.

The State President said he introduced the green belt programme that aims to intensify irrigation farming to reduce extreme dependence on rain fed agriculture to ensure people have enough food the whole year.

He said because of this, Malawi has attained an annual average Gross Domestic Product growth of 7.5 percent adding that in 2008 the growth rate was at 9.7 percent.

On this note, Dr Mutharika observed that basing on Malawi experience, the challenge facing Southern Africa today is to engender fast and sustainable macro economic growth as a way of fighting poverty.

He thanked the Southern Africa Trust for the award saying it will inspire him, Malawi, and Southern Africa to forge ahead with the vision of ending poverty in the region.

Earlier former President of Tanzania, Benjamin Mkapa, advised African countries to work towards helping in the improvement of economy of their countries to ensure that people prosper.

He congratulated Dr Mutharika for the award saying other leaders should emulate what he has achieved for the people of Malawi.

According to the organizers of the event, the nomination of a sitting President is the first in the history of the Drivers of Change Award.

They said Dr. Mutharika was nominated by a civil society organization in Malawi which has historically been critical of the government’s approach to concerns about economic justice.

Among other recipients of the Award was Emmie Chanika, Executive Director of the Civil Liberties Committee, who received the award in the individual category. She was recognized for her contribution towards ensuring that more women are elected to parliament through the 50-50 campaign.

Earlier in the day the State President held talks with former President of Madagascar Marc Ravalomana. Dr Mutharika told journalists after the talks that SADC is behind the people of Madagascar to ensure that there is rule of law.

“A meeting of SADC heads of state has been organized in Ethiopia to that effect and I am optimistic very soon there will be democracy in Madagascar,” he said-Malawi Digest.

All Bingu's appointed judges are northerners

By Lucy Liponda

All recently appointed four judges by Malawi State President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika are northerners, Malawi Digest understands.

The new judges, join another judge from the same region who has been promoted to the Supreme Court of Appeal.
The five were sworn into office in the commercial city, Blantyre on Wednesday at a function presided over by the State President himself.

This is contrary to some beliefs and reports that President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika has been favouring people from the southern region more than any other region in the country.

The appointment of the four High Court and Supreme Court judges is the latest in the last three months where Ngwazi Dr Mutharika has entrusted people from the northern region with huge responsibilities.

The appointed judges are Justice Edward Twea of the Supreme Court of Appeal, Judges Maxon Mbendera, Joe Chirwa, Godfrey Mwase and Kenani Manda.

Judges Twea, Mbendera, Chirwa, Manda and Mwase are all from the northern part of the country.

Malawi Digest has established that although judge Mwase sometimes indicates that he comes from Chileka in Blantyre, he actually comes from the north as it is only his mother who comes from Chileka.

About two months ago, Ngwazi Dr Mutharika appointed Dr Bruce Munthali as Chief Executive Office for one of Malawi’s biggest companies, the Tobacco Control Commission (TCC).

Tobacco is Malawi’s biggest foreign exchange earner and offers employment to thousands of people.

However, despite making all these positive moves to entrust huge responsible positions to some people from the northern part of the country, Dr Mutharika’s critics have ignored them and choose to remain silent.

Although Dr Mutharika has avoided to work based on regional lines by appointing people into decision making positions on merit, his strongest critics appear now come from the northern region.

The latest is Harry Mkandawire who recently wrote a letter with scathing remarks to the State President.

Interestingly, Mkandawire and those sponsoring him have decided to remain silent on Mutharika’s positive moves.

Leading human rights activist Emmie Chanika of the Civil Liberties committee has appealed to Malawians to look at national issues with a sober mind and avoid regionalism saying this would divide the country.

Although Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika has made all these five appointments on the judges on people from the north, nobody from the central, southern or eastern region of the country has made a fuss about these appointments thinking that they appointments were done on merit and that Malawi operates as one country without necessarily looking at particular regions-Malawi Digest.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

President Dr Mutharika off to South Africa

By Our Reporter

State President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika said Thursday that Malawi has experienced a lot of changes in various spheres of development since he took over the reigns of power in 2004.

The State President said this at Chileka International Airport in the commercial city, Blantyre on departure for South Africa where he is to receive the “2009 Drivers of change”award from the Southern Africa Trust in recognition of the many changes he has brought to Malawi since coming to power.

The State President observed that the recognition foreign organizations were showing to him are mainly meant to benefit all Malawians since they are complementary to his successes socially, economically and politically.

Ngwazi Dr Mutharika said he had always emphasised that Malawi has never been a poor country but the people have remained poor due to various factors which, he said, he was working to reverse the situation for the betterment of the nation.

“Since I took over in 2004, I have changed many things. I have changed what we thought about ourselves that Malawi is a poor country. I have changed people to work hard. We are now able to feed ourselves because Malawians are now working hard,” he observed.

In addition, he said, the country has remained without a political prisoner since 2004. He described this as a tremendous change in the mindset of many Malawians who were used to see people in prison due to political differences.

“Many people have insulted me, but I haven’t arrested anybody, and that is the change we are talking about. We are not arresting people simply because we have differences and that is change,” he said.

This will be Dr Mutharika’s second award within a month after receiving another honour in the United States of America from the Miami based, Foundation for Democracy in Africa-Malawi Digest.

Mutharika for judiciary independence

Malawi's Chief Justice Lovemore Munlo should be one of the happiest people in the country after President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika appointed four judges to help him in his job of discharging justice in Malawi. Pic exclusively by Malawi Digest.

By Our Reporter

Malawi State President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika on Wednesday reaffirmed his government’s commitment to the independence of the judiciary in the country for it to freely interpret the country’s laws.

Ngwazi Dr Mutharika made the remarks at Sanjika Palace in Blantyre during the swearing in ceremony of the newly appointed Supreme Court and High Court judges.

The judges are Justice Edward Twea of the Supreme Court of Appeal, and Judges Maxon Mbendera, Joe Chirwa, Godfrey Mwase, and Kenani Manda of the High Court.

The State President appointed them on September 12 this year in accordance with the Malawi Constitution.

Ngwazi Dr. Mutharika observed that even though the judiciary was an integral part of government, it was important that the branch remained independent of the other branches of government for it to freely interpret the country’s supreme law for the benefit of national development.

He urged judges in the country to use holistic approach on certain issues which are of national interest but often misinterpreted by other circles.

Dr Mutharika disclosed that it is against this background that his government plans to construct an ultra-modern high court complex in Lilongwe to ensure that judiciary just like the other branches of government is properly housed.

“When that is done, I will be proud that all the three branches of my government are properly housed for them to deliver their services in a comfortable environment,” he said adding “I want to build something that will catch the eye of every passerby.”

President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika also urged the newly appointed judges and all other judges in the country to maintain good family relationships for them to excel in their career, saying individuals with contented spouses have proved to be effective in their undertakings-Malawi Digest.

Who said Prof Mutharika can't dance?

Malawi's Justice and Constitutional Affairs Minister Professor Arthur Peter Mutharika is not only good at Law, he is also very good at taking dancing steps. In this Malawi Digest picture, Professor Mutharika was captured enjoying himself during the official opening of Amalika Teacher Training College in the mountainous tea growing district of Thyolo on 21st August, 2009.

In the picture, Professor Mutharika (right) joins pupils from the award winning Nahache Primary School of Thyolo in Lhomwe's most respected traditional dance Soopa (Tchopa).

Professor Mutharika has been joined in the dancing arena by fellow cabinet ministers including Eunice Kazembe and George Chaponda.

Although highly educated, Professor Peter Mutharika is reported to be very good at mixing with people from the grass roots.

Professor Arthur Peter Mutharika is brother to Malawi President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika and also parliamentarian in his home area, Thyolo East.Pic exclusively by Malawi Digest.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Macra pumps MK10m into MJ's pirate radio

Malawi's Information and Civic Education Minister Leckford Thotho. Pic exclusively by Malawi Digest.

By Emmanuel Sobilika

The broadcasting regulator, the Malawi Communications Regulatory Authority (Macra) says that it will pump about MK10 million into a pirate radio station that was closed down by the body over two weeks ago.

This was disclosed on Tuesday at a press briefing held in the commercial city, Blantyre by Macra’s acting Director General Mike Kuntiya.

The Standard 7 school drop-out, Gabriel Kondesi was arrested on 14 October, this year for operating a radio station called Pachikweza without a broadcasting license.

Two days later, the Mulanje Magistrate Court fined 21-year-old Kondesi MK50, 000.00 or face 10 months imprisonment with hard labour.

However, two days later, villagers who had benefited from the boy’s creativity together with his parents sold their little property and organized a MK50, 000.00 before freeing the boy from custody.

Since then, news about Gabriel Kondesi has been making headlines both locally and internationally where a lot of people and organizations have come out in the open to help the young man who used his creativity to the benefit of his community.

It is on this wavelength that Macra has decided to renovate the pirate Pachikweza radio station into a community radio station.

Kuntiya said that apart from renovating and upgrading the existing Pachikweza radio station, Macra has taken on board the young man whose creativity has mesmerized many people around the world.

“The radio will be run by the villagers themselves and Gabriel Kondesi will become one of the directors running the station,” said Kuntiya.

Kuntiya conceded that whilst they appreciate what the boy did was against the Laws of Malawi, it was also understood that he did this out of desperation to broadcast to his fellow communities.

“He is a talented and creative young man,” he said.

Speaking to Malawi Digest soon after Macra made the announcement; Kondesi said that he was humbled that his idea of Pachikweza radio had born fruits for a community radio station in his home area.

“I am very pleased that our community will have a radio station that will be broadcasting specifically into our area as I was doing with my Pachikweza radio,” he said.

Meanwhile, Kondesi disclosed that he is going back to school after a well wisher pledged to pay for his school fees.

“I will be working at this radio station on part time basis whilst continuing with my education in order to achieve my ambition of becoming an engineer,” he said.

This is the first time in Malawi that Macra has arrested an individual for operating a pirate radio station in the country.

Before his arrest, Gabriel Kondesi had been operating Pachikweza Radio Station in areas surrounding the boarder areas of Limbuli in Mulanje.

Kondesi used local materials such as car batteries, television aerial, wires and a radio cassette player to operate this illegal radio station for over 3 years.

Two years ago, the boy went to Macra to apply for a radio license but his efforts were frustrated when Macra failed to come back to him despite assurances that supervisory body would come back to him through the Mulanje District Commissioner.

Macra’s decision to open a community radio station in Soza Village in Traditional Authority Njema in the mountainous tea growing district of Mulanje concides with a visit to their offices by Information and Civic Education Minister Leckford Thotho on Friday.

Thotho, who is the official government spokesperson spent hours visiting Macra headquarters on a familiarization tour before meeting senior officials for closed door discussions.

It is not known if the issue of Gabriel Kondesi was one of the items on the agenda at this high level meeting-Malawi Digest.

Bingu for strong Scottish/Malawi ties

Malawi President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika shakes hands with Sir Jack McConnell after the luncheon. Pic by Malawi Digest.

By Our Reporter

Malawi State President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika said Friday, his government is committed to strengthen bi-lateral relations with Scotland through the promotion of contacts among the people of the two countries in order for development to prevail.

Ngwazi Dr Mutharika said this at Sanjika Palace in the commercial city, Blantyre, during a state luncheon he hosted in honour of the visiting Former Scottish Prime Minister, Sir Jack McConnell, who was in the country for a three-day visit.

During the visit, Sir McConnell visited several development projects in the northern region of this southern African country.

State President Dr Mutharika said he is determined to move Malawi from poverty to prosperity.

He said Malawians can only succeed with the support from its development partners, citing the United Kingdom as one such companions, in the fight against poverty in the country.

“There are various development prospects in the country and I am looking forward to strengthening our relations, not only with Scotland but the United Kingdom as a whole, to ensure continued support from our development partners,” said Mutharika.

He observed that with the support his government is receiving from various development partners and the business community in the country, he is optimistic that Malawi would graduate from poverty to prosperity.

“We will manage to conquer poverty,” President Mutharika stressed.

In his remarks, McConnell observed that relations between Malawi and Scotland in the United Kingdom are getting stronger, with regular exchange visits between officials from the two countries.

He commended the Malawi for the tremendous achievements on food security and fiscal prudence, saying this has enabled it experience economic development within a short period.

McConnell said the Scottish people are pleased to be associated with the achievements Malawi government has attained in the last 5-years under the wise and dynamic leadership of Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika.

He assured Malawians of continued support from Scotland in particular and the British government in general-Malawi Digest.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Crime rate drops in commercial city, Bt

Malawi Inspector General of Police Peter Mukhitho reported to be doing a good job in making sure that Malawi is safe and secure. Pic exclusively by Malawi Digest.

By Samantha Chipiliro Jere

There has been a drop in the number of criminal cases from January to June this year in areas surrounding the commercial city, Blantyre, according to an analysis report.

A Blantyre Police Station Bi-Annual Analysis Report on crime management, community police, traffic management and working resources shows that there have been fewer criminal cases for the period January-June 2009, compared to the same period last year, representing an 8 per cent drop.

The report reflects on how the station has performed, particularly in implementing its operational plan by carrying out main goals of fighting crime and reducing accidents on the roads of Blantyre.

Blantyre Police Station deputy Public Relations Officer, Lameck Thembachako, said intensive patrols and community policing are the major contributing factors to the decrease of crime in the city.

“We work in three shifts, going on foot, in some areas where roads are impassable by car. By doing that, we are able to trace criminals,” says Thembachako.

During the period understudy, the station registered 6,517 criminal cases, compared to 7, 048 cases during the same period the previous year. The change difference indicates a decrease of 46 per cent.

This year from January to June, Blantyre Police Station recorded 531 fewer cases than last year during the same period, representing a drop of 8 per cent. There is also a big decrease in statutory cases by 669, representing 46 per cent.

Blantyre Police Station covers a policing area of 228 square kilometers with four Traditional Authorities namely, Kuntaja, Kapeni, Somba, and Machinjiri. It has four sub- stations and six police units: Ndirande, Soche, Milare, Chilomoni, South Lunzu, Chirimba, Chilobwe, Kabula, Sigerege and Mpemba.

The station also has two listening units at City Centre and Ginnery Conner. Further developments are underway involving the construction of Nancholi Police Unit, according to the report.

Blantyre Police Station at present has 625 police officers, of whom 333 are at the parent station, 165 in sub- stations and 127 in police units. The total strength gives a proportional ratio of one officer policing 1,500 against a population of 1,000,000 residences in the policing area.

The analysis report shows that Chirimba, Naperi side, Chilobwe, Mthukwa, Namiwawa, Manase, Machinjiri area 10, Magalasi, Malabada, and part of Nyambadwe are some of the areas prone to crime, which commonly occurs between 2200 hours and 0300 hours.

There were 522 robbery cases that were reported during the period under study as compared to 616 similar cases registered in 2008 in the same period under review.

“This represents an exceptional decrease of robbery cases by 15.7 per cent. Statistics further indicate that Blantyre City Centre, Mbayani and Ndirande are some of the prone areas.

“Most of these robberies occurred between 1700 hours and 2000 hours and victims of these acts are manly deprived of their property at a gun or knife point,” the report says.

On sexual offences, the station registered 50 during the period under study, compared to 49 in 2008, representing an increase of only two per cent. However, defilement and sodomy cases decreased.

The report also indicates that six vehicles were stolen during the period understudy and the same number the previous year. However, four vehicles were recovered during the period under review as compared to two in 2008.

Sub-Inspector Jeremiah Mwakayoka of the station’s Research and Planning Unit, said analysis of crime rate was done annually. He said during months like January and February, crime rates go up due to hunger, while in December the rate increases because of entertainment activities.

“Towards these months, we warn the general public to be careful to avoid accidents and thieves,” he said.

Mwakayoka said that community-based policing continued to discharge its responsibilities of formulation of crime prevention strategies and undertaking activities that engage community participation, crime awareness and prevention.

“We work hand in hand with the community. They inform us about suspicious people or business. We train traditional leaders to teach their people how to report cases,” he said.

There were more traffic offences during the period under study as compared to the same segment of 2008. Drink and drive is one of the main causes of road accidents in areas under Blantyre Police Station.

The report says during the period under study, the neighborhood watch scheme was operational and that more than 40 working groups were working day and night, overseeing issues of safety and security of their respective areas. However, the report says in some places, the scheme did not do well.

The report recommends that that police visibility needs to be intensified and monitored to reduce crime rate at the level of the station, and that manpower be increased to cater for the high population rate in the station’s policing area.

It has also been noted in the report that Mbayani, Chirimba, Nancholi and Manase Townships are prone to gender- based violence.

The police station has pledged to continue sensitizing the general public through their office of community policing about the ills of gender-based violence.

The report, prepared by the police station’s Research and Planning Unit, evaluates the performance of Blantyre Police Station for the period January to June 2009 compared to the same period in 2008.

“It is when we are focused in the fight in the aforesaid areas that we will be able to meet the expectations of the people of Blantyre, that of living in a safe and secure environment,” it says-Malawi Digest.

Mulhako Wa Alhomwe festivities in pictures

Over the weekend, all roads led to Chonde in Luchenza Mulanje where the Lhomwe people were commemorating the 1st anniversary to the day they launched their cultural grouping, the Mulhako Wa Alhomwe. There was eating, drinking and dancing among many other things. It was all, Alhomwe Noophiya, meaning Lhomwes have arrived. Malawi Digest was there to capture the event for you.
Good morning Your Excellency! Founder and Patron for the Lhomwe cultural grouping and Malawi President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika greets his younger brother, Justice and Constitutional Affairs Minister Prof. Peter Mutharika. Looking on is Lhomwe Paramount Chief Mkhumba. Pic by Malawi Digest.
Part of the crowd that descended on the Mulhako Wa Alhomwe headquarters at Chonde to witness the 1st anniversary for their culture grouping. Pic by Malawi Digest.
Mulhako Wa Alhomwe founder and patron Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika cuts a ribbon marking the opening of a Mulhako School at Chonde headquarters. Looking on is Mulhako Wa Alhomwe national chairperson Joseph Mwanamvekha.Pic by Malawi Digest.
Malawi President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika admires products made by Lhomwe people out of clay. Looking on is Mulhako Wa Alhomwe national chairperson Joseph Mwanamvekha. Pic by Malawi Digest.

Malawi President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika arrives at the Mulhako Wa Alhomwe headquarters at Chonde in Luchenza, Mulanje for the celebrations. Pic by Malawi Digest.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Dr Mutharika signs SADC gender protocol

By Our Reporter

Malawi President Ngwazi Dr Bingu Wa Mutharika on Monday reaffirmed his determination to empower women in all spheres of the country’s development.

He was speaking at Sanjika Palace in the commercial city, Blantyre when he signed the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) Protocol on Gender and Development.

Present at the signing ceremony were heads of some local non-governmental and civil society organizations, cabinet ministers, senior government officials and a delegation from the SADC secretariat.

Addressing the gathering after signing the protocol, Dr Mutharika said he had for decades advocated for the empowerment of women. To prove his point, he said he was instrumental in the formation of the National Association of Business Women in Malawi (NABW) and similar organizations in the SADC region.

“It’s an issue I have followed for a long time,” said Dr Mutharika, expressing joy on signing the protocol. He said Malawi would be among the first countries to ratify and implement it.

The SADC Protocol on Gender and Development was first signed on August 17 by 11 countries at the organization’s 28th summit in South Africa.

Malawi’s signature brings to 13 the number of countries that have signed the protocol which addresses a wide range of issues affecting women pertaining to development.

Dr Mutharika said during the past five years he has been in power, he had tired to put women in key positions in various places of work, including government, statutory organizations, and at ambassadorial level.

He said a woman was capable of performing as long as “she is told what she is going to do and how she will be assessed.” He said no one should be judged without being given a job description.

Since the population of women in SADC was higher than that of men, and a time when the region was moving from poverty to prosperity, there was need to increase the role of women in all areas of development, he said.

Dr Mutharika, however, said gender balance should match with quality and appealed to women to be focused and know what they wanted.

“We really need to look at quality,” he said. “Be clear of what you want. It [the 50-50 campaign] should not just be a slogan.”

He said in the case of Malawi, the country was moving form poverty to prosperity and “we know what role women can play.”

In his speech, Dr Mutharika also deplored gender violence, and appealed to SADC countries to tackle the issue in earnest. He said it was not only Malawi, but the whole SADC region that had not contained gender violence.

He said unless an environment was created in which women could be resourceful without being inhibited and were innovative, gender balance will not be achieved because many women “will simply shy away.”

Earlier, Head of SADC Gender Unit, Mathiba Madibela, who witnessed the signing ceremony on behalf of SADC Executive Secretary, thanked Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika for signing the protocol, saying the ceremony was a special day in SADC.

Madibela said the signing of the protocol demonstrated Malawi’s renewed commitment to achieve gender equality and make a difference in the lives of women in Malawi.

In her remarks, Minister of Gender, Children and Community Development Patricia Kaliati paid tribute to the State President for promoting gender equality in the country. She said because of his support, there were more women parliamentarians than before, and many others were holding important posts.

There are now a total of 42 women legislators from across the political divide, the greatest number so far that the House which has 192 seats has ever had-Malawi Digest.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Malawians celebrate mother’s day

Malawi President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika and his Vice Joyce Banda. Banda confessed at the Mangochi rally that without Bingu, she would not have been the country's Vice President. Pic exclusively by Malawi Digest.

By Lucy Liponda

Malawians from all walks of life today, Thursday, took time-off their busy schedules to celebrate Mother’s Day, an annual event remembering all mothers.

The main celebrations took place at Makawa Primary School in Traditional Authority Mponda, in the lake side district of Mangochi.

Malawi President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika led the nation in these celebrations where he took to task men who resort to wife battering whenever differences arise in the family.

Speaking during the ceremony, the Malawian leader said that he was not amused with reports that women were being victimised by men in the country.

He condemned all acts of violence on women in this southern African country.

“Interestingly, most men who abuse their wives are those that are afraid to face fellow men at work. These men who beat up their wives are cowards,” said the State President to the ululation of the huge crowd that gathered at Makawa.

He said men need to show love to their wives and treat them with at most respect.

“If you feel your family differences are irretrievable then it’s better you agree to part ways other that resort to torturing your wife,” said the Ngwazi.

The State President said that there was a long list of things every human being can mention on how valuable their mothers were in their respective lives.

“For me to reach this far as President it’s all because of one person, my mother. Though dead, I still value her greatly,” he said.

The President also did not spare the women themselves for abuse of children.

“I am aware of children being ill-treated by some women. They are being denied food and forced to sleep outside houses,” said the President who appealed to parents to bring up their children in love and in the most responsible manner.

Speaking earlier, Malawi Vice President Joyce Banda thanked the State President for recognising Malawian women in a special way by entrusting them with decision making positions in the country.

The Vice President mentioned herself, the Attorney General, Clerk of Parliament, female cabinet ministers, deputy Speaker of Parliament among many others as some of women highly recognised by Dr Mutharika.

“Without you Sir in appointing me, I would not have been Vice President of Malawi,” she said.

Banda said that not only did Dr Mutharika make her Vice President of the country, but he also entrusted her with huge responsibilities for the country.

"I am not just a figure head Vice President but also entrusted with huge responsibilities for Malawi including issues to do with disaster preparedness and HIV/Aids among many others," she confessed.

The Bingu wa Mutharika administration has declared 15 October as a national holiday remembering all mothers in the country.

During the Bakili Muluzi era, the day was celebrated on Monday of the second week of October.

Mother’s Day was set by former late President of Malawi Ngwazi Dr Hastings Kamuzu Banda.

Then, the day was being celebrated on 17 October which many people describe to be the birth day for former official hostess, Mama Cecilia Tamanda Kadzamira before Bakili Muluzi changed it to the first Monday of the second week of October-Malawi Digest.

Bingu faults tertiary selection system

Malawi President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika attentively listening to a journalist question during the press briefing. Pic by Malawi Digest.

By Lucy Liponda & Emmanuel Sobilika

Malawi President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika has defended his government’s actions to introduce equitable university education saying the new system is aimed at giving equal opportunities to all Malawians looking for tertiary education.

Dr Mutharika was speaking on the subject for the first time since the University of Malawi announced a few months ago that it was introducing the system as a new formula of selecting students into the country’s public institutions of higher learning.

Speaking to journalists at the New State House in the administrative capital, Lilongwe, Ngwazi Dr Mutharika said that he saw nothing wrong with the new system.

He said the current university selection system is not proper as it is seen to be favouring people from one specific region.

“This must be corrected now as it is creating discontent in other areas,” said the State President who came to the press conference with a folder full of facts.

He challenged those opposing the new system of selection to engage him in a debate.

“When you want to argue, you must do that with facts which I have and these facts are not made by me,” he said.

President Mutharika disclosed that because of the discrepancies in the university selection system, even in top government positions that he described as ‘super scale’ are dominated by people from a specific region.

In arguing for his case, the State President read out figures of people from Northern Malawi who occupy ‘super scale’ positions in the country as compared to the other regions.

The facts showed dominance by people from northern region as compared to the country’s other three regions.

The President also presented facts of students’ registration at Mzuzu University and Chancellor College where it was also proved that students from the North are in dominance.

“The facts are here and I feel this is an unnecessary debate,” he said.

The President disclosed that he was forced to comment on the issue and bring out the facts saying he did this in response to some people who were deliberately distorting the facts.

“The new system is not discriminating against the people from Northern Malawi but rather it’s aimed at giving every Malawian equal opportunity to university education,” he said.

President Mutharika said that in the new system, government guarantees each district specific number of places in the university and the remaining places will be filled on merit.

In putting up his case, the State President also referred to members of his cabinet where he said some Northerners occupy important portfolios.

“Goodall Gondwe Minister of Local Government, Khumbo Kachali Minister of Transport, Professor Mwanza Minister of Health, Professor Etta Banda, Minister of Foreign Affairs and even the Vice President Joyce Banda is from Nkhatababy by marriage according to traditional norms of Lobola,” said the State President.

Although the State President mentioned the above stated ministers, he left out other Northerners including Development and Planning Minister Abbie Shabba and at least 5 other deputy Ministers.

The issue of equitable university education system has generated a lot of debate in the county although those arguing against the new system have not come out with facts the way President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika did on Wednesday-Malawi Digest.

I went fishing says Ngwazi Dr Mutharika

HIGH TABLE: Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika franked by Malawi Foreign Affairs Minister Etta Banda and Information and Civic Education Minister Leckford Thotho singing a song before the press conference. Pic by Malawi Digest.

By Lucy Liponda & Emmanuel Sobilika

Malawi President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika has disclosed that he was pre-occupied with fishing during his recent two-week holiday.

The State President made the disclosure to journalists in the administrative capital, Lilongwe on Wednesday.

“I went on holiday in Spain. I rented a beach villa and spent most of my time fishing,” the State President disclosed.

He said apart from fishing, he also enjoyed boat ridding.

“There was a time that I hired a boat driving on the Strait of Gibraltar looking for Tuna fish but we could not find any because we were told they migrate during this time of year,” he said.

The President disclosed that the boat ride took him as far as closer to Morocco in Africa on one side and Gibraltar on the other but lucky was not on his side to see his cherished fish.

“Am told this time of the year they migrate to Africa and even as far as America. So next time, I will take my holiday when am assured that I will see the fish,” he said.

Meanwhile, Ngwazi Dr Mutharika has disclosed that Speaker of the National Assembly Henry Chimunthu Banda was running the affairs at home when the country’s two top citizens were out of the country.

Ngwazi Dr Mutharika was on a trip to Brazil, USA and private holiday in Spain whilst the Vice President Joyce Banda left for official duties in Venezuela and a private visit to the United Kingdom.

“The Speaker run the affairs at home but on crucial issues, I was being consulted for direction because there are some issues that can only be sanctioned by me and nobody else,” he said.

Dr Mutharika said that the Speaker’s role is clearly spelt out in the Malawi Constitution.

“In the absence of the President, the Vice President and the Speaker then a senior cabinet minister can be chosen to run affairs that is what the Constitution says,” he said.

The President was making these comments following a debate that ensued in the country when the two top loyal servants of the people of Malawi were both outside the country-Malawi Digest.

Collecting money is Bingu’s name is theft

Ngwazi Dr Mutharika stressing a point during Wednesday's press conference. Pic by Malawi Digest.

By Lucy Liponda & Emmanuel Sobilika

Malawi President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika, has issued a stern warning to senior ruling party and government officials soliciting donations in his name, saying once caught they will be prosecuted.

Dr Mutharika was speaking on Wednesday at the New State House in the administrative capital, Lilongwe.

In his address to members of the press, the State President who is also founder and leader for the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) said was concerned that some senior ruling party, government officials and others were stealing in his name.

“The most unfortunate part is that these senior DPP officials, some cabinet ministers and other government officials have been soliciting money from businessmen of Asian origin (Amwenye) alleging they have been sent by me,” he said.

The State President dismissed these officials seeking financial help in his name.

“These people are thieves because they are not sent by me,” he said.

The president disclosed that during the campaign period for the 2009 General Elections, some people were asking business personalities to donate towards the ruling DPP campaign.

“Now that the elections are over, they are going about lying that Bingu has sent us to collect money for the strengthening of DPP,” he said.

The State President labelled these officials as ‘thieves’ saying they can be prosecuted under Malawian Laws.

“They are breaking the law under the Penal Code and once caught, they can be prosecuted and I will be done with them,” he said.

The State President challenged all business personalities in Malawi to contact him personally once they receive anybody seeking financial help in his name.

“Do not give them the money and tell them you are going to call me. If they threaten to close your business, please tell me and I will be done with them for good,” he said.

The President challenged anybody soliciting money in his name that they are getting it wrong.

“If I need any help from any business person, I can call any business person myself, I don’t need to send anybody,” he said.

Recently there have been reports of people soliciting money in the name of State President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika.

Others have gone further falsifying potential employers that they are relatives to the State President in order to get favoured in employment-Malawi Digest.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Ngwazi Dr Mutharika meets the press

Malawi President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika. Pic by Malawi Digest.

By Lucy Liponda

Malawi President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika is this Wednesday morning meeting journalists from the country’s media houses at the New State House in the administrative capital, Lilongwe.

According to information gathered by Malawi Digest, the press conference to be addressed by the Head of State is expected to start at 10 am.

Although the main focus of the conference has not been disclosed by the State House, the meeting is expected to be centred on the State President’s recent successful trips to Brazil and the United States of America.

Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika was in Brazil for a state visit before proceeding to the USA for the United Nations General Assembly.

Whilst in the US, the Miami based Foundation for Democracy in Africa, honoured Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika with the Medal of Glory award.

This is the highest honour by the organisation awarded to leaders who are making a difference in the lives of their people.

Ngwazi Dr Mutharika was recognised for the promotion of democracy in Malawi and uplifting the lives of Malawians through the country’s economic successes in the last five years as well as food security

Malawi Digest will keep you updated as events unfold at this important press conference.

The addressing of this press conference by Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika three-days after his arrival is contrary to propaganda reports by some opposition funded media that the State President shunned journalists when he landed in the country at Kamuzu International Airport on Sunday.

Many journalists have hailed the State President for addressing a press conference at his opportune time as this will give the media workers enough time to ask the State President questions of national importance unlike at the airports where often times, time has been seen to be a limiting factor-Malawi Digest.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Justice Minister lands to a heroe's welcome

Professor Peter Mutharika showing his Charles Nagel medal of honour to journalists at Kamuzu International Airport soon after landing on Monday. Pic by Samuel Makaka.

By Lucy Liponda

Malawi’s Minister of Justice and Constitutional Affairs Professor Arthur Peter Mutharika has arrived in Malawi to a heroes welcome in the administrative capital, Lilongwe

Tens of singing men and women, stood outside the Kamuzu International Airport VIP lounge chanting and singing songs of happiness and praise to Professor Mutharika for the honour that he has received from Washington University in St Louis, United States of America.

The South African Airways plane carrying the Malawian hero, Professor Mutharika landed at KIA at around 12:45 pm on Monday.

After descending the steps from the aeroplane, the professor got into his official vehicle before being driven to the VIP lounge where journalists from almost all media houses were waiting for a briefing for this humble son of Malawi.

There were at least 15 journalists from the country’s major media houses.

In his address to the anxious journalists, Professor Mutharika said that he was humbled by the Charles Nagel honour from the Washington University saying it was not a mean achievement.

“Like any other Malawian, I feel proud and greatly honoured for this award which will encourage me even more to write more books on Law,” he said.

Professor Mutharika then showed the journalists the medal he got from the Washington as part of the honour.

“There is no money involved in this but just an honour of recognition to the good job that I have been doing in Law,” he said.

Professor Peter Mutharika, has become the first African lawyer ever to receive this prestigious international honour from the Washington University.

The Justice and Constitutional Affairs Minister, Professor Peter Mutharika installed on Monday, 14th September, 2009 as the Charles Nagel Professor of International and Comparative Law by the Washington University in St Louis.

According to information posted by Washington University on the internet, Professor Mutharika was installed as Nagel Professor at 4:30 p.m. in Anheuser-Busch Hall, Room 309.

The professorship was made possible through the estate of Nagel’s law partner, Daniel Noyes Kirby, L.B. 1888, the University said.

Professor Mutharika is an expert on international economic law, international law and comparative constitutional law, according to the US University.

Professor Mutharika is the author of numerous books and articles, including his forthcoming book on international trade, “Foreign Investment Security in Sub-Saharan Africa, The Emerging Policy and Legal Frameworks.”

He was an International Law Fellow at the United Nations International Law Commission in Geneva and at the United Nations Institute for Training and Research in New York-Malawi Digest.

Big fish involved in ‘Nachipanti’ killings

Malawi's Inspector General of Police Peter Mukhitho whose officers are doing enough to catch the big fish otherwise known as chejumo for sponsoring the Ndirande serial killings. Pic by Malawi Digest.

By Mary Chikoja

Malawi Police authorities are looking into possibilities that a highly profiled personality or personalities were involved in the serial killings that have been taking place in the highly populated Ndirande Township in the commercial city, Blantyre since 2006, Malawi Digest understands.

Police have in their custody, Jack Bandawe as their main suspect to the Ndirande serial killings that have led to loss of several innocent lives and injury to others.

Several other people named by ‘Nachipanti’ as he is popularly known are also being held in Police custody.

Bandawe has told the Police during interrogation that he was being paid MK100, 000.00 per killing by his ‘masters’.

A senior Malawi Police official close to the investigations has disclosed to Malawi Digest that Police are piecing together information that may lead to further arrests.

“There are more arrests that are likely to follow as more names keep on coming up as we continue with these investigations. People should therefore not be surprised to hear that we have also arrested somebody possibly, big,” said the officer, who for obvious reasons cannot be named.

Two years ago, when the killings were at their pick, a woman told the Malawi public that the serial killings in Ndirande Township were linked to former President Bakili Muluzi.

She then alleged that Muluzi was using the blood in the serial killings for evil works as he belongs to a ‘Satanic’ grouping.

The woman then described Muluzi as ‘Makolija’

Muluzi was given the name ‘Makolija’ by his current bed fellow, Brown Mpinganjira when the two fell apart in 2000.

The name of ‘Makolija’ has now fitted well in minds of many Malawians and that even kids describe him as such whenever they see this failed Malawi politician.

Tension in Ndirande Township has been very high since Saturday following the burning of houses and looting of property belonging to suspects involved in the killings.

These acts of violence came soon after news broke that one of ‘Nachipanti’s’ victims Sheila Tawakali, 18, died at the country’s biggest referral hospital, QECH, where she was battling for her life after being seriously injured by Bandawe.

Another victim Maggie Tawakali, 15 is still battling for her life at the same hospital after being injured in the same incident.

In the latest incident of serial killings that led to the arrest of ‘Nachipanti’, a four-year-old Lazaki Mpasa was also murdered by Bandawe.

Police have so far arrested the main suspect, Jack Bandawe, 26, also known as ‘Nachipanti’, businesswoman Towera Chisa Msambara and her son Kelly Msambara, Alinuswe Munde, 20 and Noel Numelo, 21.

Meanwhile, more prominent business personalities in Ndirande Township are reported to have gone into hiding after hearing rumour that they are the next targets for these acts of violence.

On Saturday, people burned to ashes minibuses and houses belonging to businessman Paseli for suspecting him to be involved in these acts of serial killings.

However, Paseli has not been yet arrested by the Police. Property also belonging to businesswoman Lucy Kwanyasa was also burned to ashes.

Property belonging to other suspects connected to the killings has also been set ablaze whilst the owners are in Police custody-Malawi Digest.

Malawi's Ngwazi Dr Mutharika is back

Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika walking on red carpet with Vice President Joyce Banda. On his right is Army Commander is Marko Chidziko and on the left is Inspector General of Police representative Commissioner Loti Dzodzi. Pic by Adack Pafupi, Malawi News Agency.

By Emmanuel Sobilika

Malawi President Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika has arrived back home after a successful official trip to Brazil and the United States of America.

He was welcomed on arrival at Kamuzu International Airport (KIA) in the administrative capital, Lilongwe by thousands upon thousands of people led by Vice President Joyce Banda.

Also at KIA welcoming the Ngwazi were the Chief Secretary Bright Msaka SC, Army Commander Marko Chidziko and a representative of the Inspector General of Police, Commissioner Lot Dzodzi.

The State President later greeted cabinet ministers, Members of Parliament, traditional leaders and watched a few dances before proceeding to the New State House in Lilongwe.

Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika, left the country on 15 September, 2009 for a three-day official visit to Brazil and later proceeded to the United States of America for the UN General Assembly.

Whilst in the US, Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika was honoured by the Miami based Foundation for Democracy in Africa when he was given the Medal for Glory award.

He was honoured for promoting democracy in Malawi and developing the country’s economy and ensuring food security.

The president also had one-on-one discussions with UN Secretary General Ban-Kin-Moon and attended meetings and luncheons with global leader’s including US President Baraki Obama and British Prime Minister Goldon Brown.

The State President later proceeded on a two week private holiday that was announced well in advance before he left Malawi in September-Malawi Digest.

Malawi’s chances for CAN 2010 brightened

Flames coach, Kinnah Phiri says that Malawi has all the chances to qualify. Pic by Malawi Digest.

By Lucy Liponda

Malawi has chances of qualifying for the 2010 Nations Cup finals in Angola, national football team, the Flames coach, Kinnah Phiri has disclosed.

He was speaking an inclusive interview with Malawi Digest on Monday following his team’s outstanding performance against Ivory Coast on Saturday.

In the match played at the giant Kamuzu Stadium in the commercial city, Blantyre, the Flames gave out their best against one of Africa’s highly rated football sides, Ivory Coast.

The Flames were the first to score in the second-half through Jacob Ngwira and the Ivorians cancelled the lead through their marksman Didier Drogba.

The match finished at 1-1 giving hopes that Malawi may qualify for the 2010 Africa Cup of Nations.

The Flames chances were further enhanced on Sunday when Burkina Faso beat Guinea in another of the Group’s World Cup and Nations Cup qualifiers.

Speaking in an interview with Malawi Digest, coach Kinnah Phiri said that the result in the Burkina Faso-Guinea match has given Malawi a further chance to qualify for 2010 Nations Cup finals in Angola.

“We have to make sure that we win our last match against Burkina Faso and I can assure all Malawians that we have the weaponry to do that,” he said.

The Flames mentor continued to appeal for more support ahead of this important away match.

“We need good preparations so that we are ready to stop Burkina Faso in this crucial encounter,” he said-Malawi Digest.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Police probe Ndirande mysterious attacker

By Emmanuel Sobilika

Malawi Police detectives, continue to question a man believed to have been attacking innocent civilians in the populous Ndirande Township in the commercial city, Blantyre.

The man was apprehended in the early hours of Wednesday at Goliyo in the same Ndirande Township soon after killing a 4-year old boy and raping two sisters in the same house.

Southern region Police spokesperson Davie Chingwalu confirmed the arrest of a 26-year old man, who is suspected to have carried out these atrocities from as early as 2006.

Police have refused to name the man at this point in time but Malawi Digest has established that he disclosed to the Police that his name is Jack Phiri.

“Our officers are interrogating him at a place that I am not able to disclose at the moment,” said

Chingwalu said that the arrest of the man is in connection to a murder inquiry in Ndirande Township where a 4-year old Lazaki Mpasa was brutally murdered on Wednesday morning.

The man is also suspected to have raped two sisters, Sheila and Maggie Tawakali aged 15 and 18 respectively.

The victims were in the same house when the attacker forced entry into their residence.

Mysterious attacks have been reported in the populous Ndirande Township from about 2006 when girl students at the neighbouring Blantyre Secondary School claimed a man in his pants was invading their hostels raping girls.

The students then, claimed the man wore a mask to conceal his face.

A few months later, women in Ndirande Township claimed a man befitting the descriptions had also attacked them in their homes.

When the man was apprehended on Wednesday, he was in his pants and wore two face masks.

The mysterious attacks in Ndirande Township were once linked to former president Bakili Muluzi as being the man behind them.

Muluzi sued the woman who made the claims that he was behind the killings and attacks in Ndirande. The case is still in the courts of law-Malawi Digest.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Vehicle smashed over subsidy fertilizers

A vehicle belonging to the central region’s Ntchisi District Assembly was on Monday smashed by irate villagers who protested against a small number of beneficiaries in the farm input subsidy programme.

The vehicle was smashed at Pondani Primary School in the area of Traditional Authority (TA) Chikho where a district assembly team had gone for a pre-registration exercise which is underway in the area.

According to the team leader, Godfrey Kam’munda the incident took place in the presence of TA Chikho himself who was there and his subjects showed no signs of respect to his presence.

“The people were very angry with the smaller number of beneficiaries per village. They wondered why all the farming families in the villages, as indicated on the lists we had brought from the assembly, were not considered as beneficiaries and they thought it was us (the assembly team) that trimmed the list in order to cheat them,” said Kam’munda.

He said instead of the villagers going into groups to identify bonafide beneficiaries, they surrounded the assembly team and started insulting and manhandling them including a police officer who had two canisters of teargas but could not have a chance to use them.

The team leader said the situation got out of hand when one of the team members who is a prison officer produced a piston which did not threaten the villagers but rather fueled their anger.

“That’s when we decided to rush to our vehicle but the villagers had started throwing stones on to us and when we were about to leave they smashed the vehicle by breaking some of its glasses except the windscreen,” he said.

According to Ntchisi Police, the vehicle, registration number DA 2203 belongs to the Ntchisi Community Development office.

The vehicle looked very archaic with no glasses in some of its windows as it returned to the assembly.

Acting District Agriculture Development Officer for Ntchisi, Denis Zingeni said the issue is in the hands of the Police.

“We have done this exercise for the past five years but all along people have never behaved this way. We need the perpetrators to be brought to book. So we believe the police will do their job to apprehend the culprits,” said Zingeni.

Pondani centre is a third place where people have protested against fewer numbers of the farm input subsidy programme beneficiaries in Ntchisi with others sending back unfilled registration forms-Malawi News Agency.

Man jailed for 'sperms' indecent assault

The Neno Second Grade Magistrate Court in the southern region district of Neno on Monday slapped Laxman Manduta, 34, with three years imprisonment with hard labour (IHL) for indecent assault.

The court heard that Manduta on September 27 penetrated his penis between legs and ejaculated sperms on a 4 year old girl, a daughter to his brother in marriage.

The court also heard that parents of the victim left their daughter with the wife of the accused person when they were leaving for church.

Laxman seized the opportunity to commit the offence after his wife went to their garden to collect tomatoes.

Manduta was arrested after his wife saw sperms on the girl's thighs and dress when she came back home. She reported the issue to Police who referred the girl to the hospital.

Medical examination indicated that the girl was not defiled but sperms were found on her thighs and dress.

In mitigation Manduta agreed to have committed an offence but asked the court to give him a lenient punishment since he was attacked with Satan and the evil spirit.

Passing judgment Second Grade Magistrate Marsen Nyambi said there are less mitigating factors than aggravating factors.

“The Satan that attacked him is an infringement to human rights which psychologically affected the girl and the accused deserves a stiff punishment in order to deter other would be offenders,” he said.

Manduta hails from Kamoto village in Traditional Authority Dambe in the same Neno district-Malawi News Agency.

Head teacher's lust takes him to 9 yrs jail

The Nkhunga First Grade Magistrate Court in the central region district of Nkhotakota on Monday sentenced head teacher of Our Future Private Primary School, Thomas Ndambo to nine year imprisonment with hard labour for defiling a seven year old pupil at the school.

Police Prosecutor Willy Asibu told the court that Ndambo, 26, defiled his standards two pupil (name withheld) on September 25 this year around 15:00 hours when the victim had gone to the house of the head teacher with friends to attend part time classes.

“At the end of the classes, Thomas ordered the victim to remain behind while dismissing the other pupils,” Asibu said.

He said Ndambo took advantage of his wife absence since she was away attending to some other household chores to defile the girl.

The police prosecutor said two days later the mother of the girl was surprised after noting blood stains on the child’s underwear and when questioned, the girl revealed the ordeal.

He said the mother then reported the matter to Nkhunga Police Station where she was referred to the hospital for medical examination which revealed that the girl was indeed defiled.

Ndambo who comes from Salanje village Senior Traditional Authority Kaomba in the central region district of Kasungu pleaded guilty to the offence and asked for leniency from the presiding magistrate when passing sentence because he has a wife, two children and looks after two young relations.

Presiding in the case, First Grade Magistrate Stanley Goma slapped Ndambo with a nine year custodial sentence with hard labour saying the behavior is detrimental to the country’s education sector.

He said the practice is contrary to teaching ethics and code of conducts and as such the accused deserve a stiffer penalty to deter other teachers from indulging in such immoral behavior.

The victim hails from Kankhomba Village in the area of Senior Chief Kanyenda in Nkhotakota district- Malawi News Agency.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Unima graduate made Dowa village headman

In what can be described as rare but encouraging situations in Malawi, a 61-year –old University of Malawi's Polytechnic graduate in electrical engineering, Bristol Chilunjika was on Saturday installed as village headman Isaki in the area of Traditional Authority (T.A) Kayembe in the central region district of Dowa.

Newly installed Village Headman Isaki graduated from the Polytechnic, a constituent college of the University of Malawi. He later worked with Limbe Leaf Tobacco Company before resigning to take up this job of leading his people as village head.

Speaking during the colourful ceremony held on Saturday, TA Kayembe asked the new village headman to collaborate with all traditional leaders in the area for government to achieve sustainable development.

“As village headman Isaki, work together with all traditional leaders in this area and be dedicated to perform superbly. Support government of the day for development to prevail,” said Chief Kayembe.

She cautioned traditional leaders against the practice of seizing land from people in their area, as this development is counter productive.

Speaking earlier, group village headman Sendeza asked the newly crowned Isaki to respect Chiefs.

Village headman Isaki told reporters after the ceremony that he was short of words on his new status in society, adding that he is yet to experience what it feels to be traditional leader.

“I cannot say any words. I have just been installed as a leader in my village. Give me sometime to experience my work, “he said.

In his initial days before university and secondary school education, the new village headman went to went to Manthimba and Namwili Primary Schools in the Dowa.

“I was then selected to Dedza Secondary School after my primary school education from where I passed to go to the Polytechnic,” he said.

In recent years, Malawi has seen a new calibre of traditional leaders being installed in positions.

Some of these leaders installed include university graduates.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Mbewe blasts 'deaf' Bakili Muluzi's hunger

Former President Bakili Muluzi was shouted at by his close friend Patrick Mbewe right at his house, BCA Hill.

By Lucy Liponda

Prominent businessman and former cabinet minister, Patrick Mbewe was the only person linked to the opposition United Democratic Front (UDF) who openly challenged failed presidential candidate Bakili Muluzi that it was wrong for the party to support the presidential candidacy of Malawi Congress Party (MCP) leader, John Tembo in the May polls, Malawi Digest understands.

The other people in UDF fail, to criticize Muluzi because they would not want to annoy the man they beg for their bread and butter.

Mbewe, who is one of the founders for the opposition UDF party and former executive member, is reported to be a very close family friend to Muluzi and as a result he can tell him anything openly without fearing any of Muluzi's repraisals.

Malawi Digest sources closer to both Muluzi and Mbewe have confirmed the two exchanged bitter-words at the end of April and early May this year.

Our source says that from the word go, Mbewe told Muluzi that it was not proper for the UDF leader to make a gamble by seeking another third term of office when in actual sense the Laws of were very clear that former presidents cannot bounce back.

“Mbewe told Muluzi that he should have drawn a leaf from his example by quitting politics other than trying to use the back door to find his way into the presidential candidacy for the 2009 elections. The advice by Mbewe on Muluzi fell on deaf ears,” said our source.

Patrick Mbewe, is one of the very few former UDF Members of Parliament who quit politics voluntarily. When he retired in 2004, he supported former Finance Minister, Friday Jumbe as Member of Parliament for his Chiradzulu Central constituency.

The Malawi Digest source further disclose that after receiving a negative response from Muluzi, Mbewe left Muluzi alone as is said 'let sleeping dogs lie.'

Our sources say that earlier this year, about January/February, business tycoon Patrick Mbewe left Malawi for the United States of America and later Britain on what was described as a long vacation.

Business guru Mbewe, is reported to own houses in both USA and Britain and some of his family members are reported to be residents in the two countries.

Whilst in the UK in April, Mbewe is reported to have been informed that following a court decision stopping Muluzi from running for the unconstitutional third term of office, Muluzi had opted to support John Tembo of the Malawi Congress Party instead.

The UDF went into the May polls without any presidential candidate.

According to our sources, these reports are said to have infuriated Patrick Mbewe even further because Muluzi and the UDF were now supporting a candidate that they demonized for over 10 years.

During his time in power, Bakili Muluzi described John Tembo as a big crook, murderer, killer and serious manipulator.

Our source reports that Mbewe contacted Muluzi by telephone from London inquiring if what he heard was true that UDF were partnering the MCP and Tembo in the May elections.

Mbewe was concerned that the MCP as a party had a dirty past and its leader having a questionable life.

Muluzi is reported to have not given Mbewe a convicing answer. It was at this point in time that Mbewe decided to cut-shot his overseas holiday and immediately returned home to try and pump sense into Bakili Muluzi.

Mbewe is reported to have advised senior UDF officials including Muluzi that it was going to be suicidal for the UDF to go into an election without a presidential candidate.

Mbewe returned to Malawi on Saturday 25th April, 2009 using South African Airways from Johannesburg. He landed at Chileka International Airport in the commercial city, Blantyre.

Later on the same day of his arrival, Mbewe contacted Muluzi proposing a meeting but the former Malawi leader declined, saying he had a busy weekend full of political campaign meetings.

However, when the two spoke on telephone the following week, Muluzi is reported to have accepted to meet Patrick Mbewe on Friday, Labours Day 1st May, 2009.

The two met at Muluzi’s BCA Hill Residence in Blantyre at 3:00pm after Muluzi had his Friday prayers at Kamba Mosque in the same city. Muluzi is a moslem and moslems have their main weekly prayers on Fridays.

Partrick Mbewe arrived at Muluzi’s BCA Hill residence at 2:50pm and was allowed entry into Muluzi's premises by two security guards (names withheld).

Mbewe drove to Muluzi’s residence in a white state of the art-Lexus in personalized numbers, ‘PBM’

The former cabinet minister in the Muluzi government was accompanied to BCA Hill by one person, his personal chauffer.

The meeting between Patrick Mbewe and Muluzi took place in Muluzi’s office at his BCA Hill and it went on up to around 6 pm. The two failed to reach a compromise but our sources say that Mbewe was fired up accusing Muluzi of trying to kill the UDF.

“This was the first time that we have heard of a visitor coming to BCA Hill and shout at the Bwana (Muluzi) right in the face,” said one of our sources, himself a Muluzi member of staff at the residence.

Soon after Patrick Mbewe left in anger, Muluzi is reported to have immediately summoned former MP Lilian Patel and Hophmally Makande to whom he expalined the whole story on how Mbewe blasted him and on how he was dressed down.

Mbewe, is also reported to have confided in one of our sources that; “Muluzi is a deaf person who will cry with an axe in his head.”

According to information gathered by Malawi Digest, Mbewe was suggeting to Muluzi that instead of supporting Tembo who many Malawians believe has a dirty and criminal past, the UDF should allow former Finance Minister Friday Jumbe represent the party as its presidential candidate.

Muluzi is reported to have given a blatant no, saying he doesn’t trust anybody in the opposition UDF.

Although Bakili Muluzi insisted in supporting Tembo during the May polls, the two political giants were given a 1st round knock-out blow by Ngwazi Dr Bingu wa Mutharika and his Democratic Progressive Party.

Although Bakili Muluzi is failing to listen to Patrick Mbewe’s advice now, Mbewe is one of the very few business men that heavily financed Muluzi when he was campaigning for the presidency in 1993/94-Malawi Digest.