Police eat humble pie on Mzuzu suspects
Malawi Police Service have said suspects behind the Mzuzu joint opposition rally bloody-violence were legally granted police bail but are still under police watch.
This confirms our investigative findings that, contrary to earlier claims, the five suspects were secretly let loose by the police.
In a walk-in interview at our Blantyre office on Thursday, National Police Spokesperson, Nicholas Gondwa, said the suspects were released on police bail.
“The suspects were released on police bail reference number MU/ CR/126/03/2016. Police have powers to grant bail for the offence for which the suspects were charged.
“Bail bonds were duly signed by the station CID officer and each of the suspects on March 26, 2016 meaning that the matter is still under investigation and still open for prosecution,” Gondwa said.
The Daily Times investigations had established that the five: Francis Kasyololo, 30, George Mwamtobe, 38, Lumbani Munthali, 29, Clive Nthakomwa, 52 and Thembisire Nkosi, 32 were released without following legal procedures.
But Gondwa said police were working independently on the matter and dismissed any link to the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP).
Asked why it had to take publication of our story for the law enforcers to give feedback on the matter, Gondwa blamed the situation on bureaucracy.
“It took time for the Public Relations Office to get hold of information on the same. That is why we could not respond to the media’s inquiry in time.
“It is standard procedure for stations to refer matters to regions for necessary action. The matter in question is thus receiving the required attention,” said Gondwa.
According to the Criminal Procedure and Evidence Code, at the expiry of 48 hours after any arrest, a suspect is supposed to be brought before a court of law where they are furnished with reasons for their detention, a thing which did not happen in this case.
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