The number of arrests in the brutal murder of a 22-year-old albino man has risen to 12 following the arrest of a Catholic priest, Father Thomas Muhosha, on Monday, police have said.
Macdonald Masambuka, a person with albinism, went missing last month but his body was found without legs and arms following confession by a suspect.
National Police spokesperson, James Kadadzera, confirmed that Muhosha was arrested in connection with the murder of Masambuka.
“The most important thing is that he is in police custody and being interviewed in connection with the death of Masambuka,” he said.
Kadadzera said the priest has been on the run since investigations on the matter started.
Yesterday, the Catholic Diocese of Zomba announced the suspension of Muhosha to pave the way for investigations.
In a statement issued Tuesday and signed by bishop of the diocese, Reverend George Tambala, the diocese said Muhosha has been suspended from priesthood awaiting conclusion of the case.
“The Catholic Church defends the sanctity of life at any point of a person’s life and the killing of albinos is a direct violation of the sanctity of life. The Diocese of Zomba wishes to express its full cooperation with the arms of the law to see that truth and justice for the victims is established in this case,” the statement reads in part.
The diocese pledges to assist police investigations when required.
“We want to take this opportunity to convey our deepest solidarity with all Catholic faithful and citizens of Malawi who are wounded in their faith due to this sad incident,” it reads.
So far, a police officer, a medic and others have been arrested for allegedly being part of the syndicate involved in the gruesome murder of Masambuka.
Since 2014, over 20 persons with albinism have been killed, over nine cases of abductions have been reported in the past four months while three people have been reported missing.
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