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Joyce Banda’s camp accuses police of secrecy

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Finger-pointing continues between police and former president Joyce Banda over the robbery that happened at her private residence at Chintheche in Nkhata Bay in April this year.

In the latest exchange, Banda’s spokesperson Andekuche Chanthunya has accused the law enforcers of failing to fill them in on the arrest of prime suspect Ian Khumalo, aged 46 years.

In a telephone interview Tuesday, Chanthunya expressed shock at the new development and then raised concern that police did not involve the family in the investigations.

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“We don’t have any information on the arrest[ of Khumalo], hopefully the police will act professionally and tell us what we need to know. We would want to get to the bottom of this,” he said.

In earlier interviews after the robbery, Chanthunya blamed the break-in on government for depriving Banda of her privileges including the security detail as former president, thus rendering her vulnerable.

He said during the break-in, Banda’s computers were tampered with and documents rummaged through, thus raising more security fears.

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“We, however, have taken necessary steps to ensure the home and property are secure but we can’t be saying it in the media,” he said.

Speaking separately, however, police spokesperson in Nkhata Bay Ignatius Esau hit back at Banda’s aide that police are not answerable to them.

“We can’t be updating them on every little detail, at this stage we will need them in court as witnesses. Otherwise, as police, we have endeavoured to do our work professionally,” Esau said.

In a twist of events, earlier this year police accused Banda’s camp of non-cooperation in the course of the probe.

Khumalo was arrested in Karonga on November 3, after a spate of robberies in the district.

Police publicist in the district Enock Livason said yesterday that Khumalo was convicted and sentenced to 52 months in prison with hard labour.

He said: “We were alerted that he fled Nkhata Bay for similar offences, and now that he is convicted authorities in Nkhata Bay should be coming for him anytime for him to answer the other charges there.”

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