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National Registration Bureau irks Malawians of Asian origin

Malawians of Asian origin have lodged a complaint to the Malawi Human, Rights Commission (MHRC) of being sidelined to the ongoing national identification registration exercise.

They are complaining that they are not happy with the way the National Registration Bureau (NRB) is handling the registration process.

NRB Public Relations Officer, Norman Fulatira, said they are yet to receive the complaint from MHRC.

However, Fulatira said NRB’s mandate is to register every bona fide Malawian who is 16 years and above and issue them with a national identity card.

He said as for Malawians with foreign origin, the NRB has instructed, registration officers to refer such cases to a centre which is at the district commissioner’s office because this centre is closer to NRB’s district registration officers as well as immigration officers who can verify documentation as submitted by this category of Malawians.

Speaking after receiving the complaints, MHRC Executive Secretary, David Nungu, confirmed that Malawians of Asian origin have complained of being denied to register in almost all the centres, but are only allowed to register at one centre that is, at district commissioner’s office only.

According to Nungu, some of the citizens who travelled all the way from Blantyre, complained that members of the public use vulgar language bordering on racial discrimination at registration centres .

Nungu also said the people also complained of being told to identify themselves if they are Malawian by producing passports whenever they are passing through the country’s roadblocks.

However, Nungu has said his office will forward the complaints to commissioners.

Checklist for registration of Malawians of foreign origin is demanding the people to show Malawian passport, voter registration card, driver’s licence or birth certificate.

The country’s Constitution demands that all citizens be equal under the law regardless of race, tribe, gender, religion or creed.

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