President Lazarus Chakwera Wednesday condemned the stoning to death of a 70-year-old woman who was being accused of practising witchcraft in Dedza and the violent defiling of a young girl in Chikwawa and charged that perpetrators of the acts have to face the law.
Chakwera also damned the torching of Kumbali Lodge in Lilongwe’s Area 44 by some villagers who allegedly got angry after their colleagues were arrested for encroaching on the private property.
Speaking when he appeared before Parliament, Chakwera said rising cases of mob justice and defilement are a cause for concern.
“I am sad that some people are taking the law into their own hands. I want to assure women and the elderly that they will be protected. Perpetrators of such evil attacks will be brought to book. It is important that we all observe the rule of law,” Chakwera said.
In the august House, he asked that a minute of silence should be observed in honour of the slain Dedza woman apart from directing relevant authorities to ensure that justice is served for the defiled girl whose graphic ordeal went viral on social media yesterday.
On the torching of Kumbali Lodge, Chakwera said much as land is a sticky issue in the country, it is important to ensure that disagreements are resolved amicably without any chaos.
He said his government would follow issues of land shortages in the country to ensure that all laws are respected.
Chakwera also slammed authorities for what he termed as greed, saying some people in authority are selling land to more than one buyer.
“The key things that I have learnt from my visit here are crosscutting; issues to do with land, issues to do with dispute settlement, issues to do with investments, issues to do with people encroaching into other people’s property and taking the law into their own hands.
“These are lessons that ought to teach all of us on how we could respond to critical matters that need urgent attention,” Chakwera said.
Meanwhile, dozens of people have been arrested in connection with the torching of the lodge and the murder of the Dedza woman.
In another act of lawlessness, police in the Northern Region have arrested Mafayo Mizwa of Mzimba District on suspicion that he stubbed his girlfriend to death apparently after accusing him of having a secret love affair.
Northern Region Police Deputy Public Relations Officer, Maurice Chapola, said the suspect is believed to have stabbed his girlfriend Annily Nkhonse, 18, on Tuesday at Chimutu Hara Village, Traditional Authority M’mbelwa.