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Poly shooting case goes to MHRC, MIPC

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James Kadadzera

Government has sought the assistance of Malawi Independent Police Commission (MIPC) and Malawi Human Rights Commission (MHRC) in the case involving the shooting of The Polytechnic student Blessings Nyondo.

Nyondo, who later died of bullet wounds, met his fate during the night of December 31 in Blantyre, after which National Police spokesperson James Kadadzera indicated that the student had been shot at by a Malawi Broadcasting Corporation (MBC) security officer and not Malawi Police Service personnel as some quarters alleged.

Homeland Security Minister Richard Chimwendo Banda made the announcement after he held meetings with Malawi Police Service top officials in the Southern Region and MBC management Monday.

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He said a number of questions had to be addressed for people to come to the right conclusion on what happened to Nyondo.

“The questions you are asking me are the questions I also have. Questions like: Was it not possible for two armed security personnel to arrest the boy? In what state was he? Why shooting at someone who is running away?

“What should be clear, however, is that the boy was not shot at by the police officer as some people are saying but MBC security personnel. I have spoken to him and he has confirmed that he fired two shots; one in the air and another one at the boy,” Chimwendo Banda said.

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He, however, said, according to the two security personnel, Nyondo allegedly attempted to run away after failing to grab guns from armed people that were in the MBC vehicle.

“This is what they are saying and I repeat what they are saying. I am aware of calls for demonstrations but I would like to urge everyone to give the two institutions a chance to do their job. I pledge not to back anyone because his [Nyondo’s] parents deserve justice,” he said.

The minister also said a woman who was on the scene allegedly identified Nyondo as one of the robbers who had attacked her and her colleagues a few minutes earlier.

MBC acting Director- General Aiden Gumeni corroborated the minister’s sentiments, adding that they would cooperate with investigators on the issue.

Gumeni also said MBC had been supporting the boy during the time he was sick, and also provided support after he died.

“We regret the death of this boy. We have been there supporting the family throughout the sickness and funeral. We will continue to cooperate with everyone so that justice is done,” he said.

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