The Department of Immigration and Citizenship Services has arrested 17 Maasai who are living in the country without proper documentation.
National Immigration spokesperson, Joseph Chauwa, said the 17 have been arrested for illegal stay as the days they were given at the border expired.
He said they will be deported soon.
While welcoming the arrests, the Indigenous Business Association of Malawi (Ibam) asked why Immigration authorities were targeting the Maasai only.
“We also have other people from other countries that are working and doing business without business permits in the country, why are they also not being chased?” Ibam president Mike Mlombwa queried.
The Maasai people of East Africa live in southern Kenya and northern Tanzania along the Great Rift Valley on semi-arid and arid lands.
Many of them have in recent months been seen in the country, selling their merchandise mainly Maasai sandals.
Chauwa said the department noted that many Maasai people are coming to dwell and do business in Malawi, without proper documents, hence the action they have taken.
“We have started arresting them…the process started on Wednesday this week and we have so far arrested 17 of them and it’s ongoing,” he said.
According to Mlombwa, Malawians should be empowered as opposed to empowering people from other countries.
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