No fresh probe into July 20 killings



The government has said it may not institute a fresh probe into the killing of 21 people who were shot dead by police during the July 20 2011 anti-government demonstrations because the issue is in court.

Minister of Justice and Constitutional Affairs, Samuel Tembenu, said in an interview that his ministry understands that the matter was taken to court years back but that, to date, prosecution has not happened.


A 2012 commission of inquiry report indicates that police used live ammunition to disburse protesters.

Speaking on Friday during this year’s memorial service for eight people who were buried at a mass grave in Zolozolo, Mzuzu, the families demanded justice.

A representative of the families, Mercy Mbezuma, said the government seems to be reluctant to continue with court proceedings because the families were compensated.


But Tembenu said the matter is already in court.

“I know that the families might wish us to commence a fresh probe. We cannot do so because what I know is that the matter is in court. I am not at the office now. Let me check the files and see how best to go with the matter,” Tembenu said.

At the event, Mbezuma said families are angry with Church and Society of Livingstonia Synod of the Church of Central Africa Presbyterian, after its leaders chickened out of the event this year.

But Moses Mkandawire of Church and Society said recently that their organisation failed to be part of this year’s event because it was engaged in other activities.

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