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Rumphi communities pen APM over security

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Some members of the community from Bolero, Rumphi, have petitioned President Peter Mutharika to instruct Police Inspector General, Duncan Mwapasa, to transfer Rumphi Police Officer-In-Charge, Ulemu Kalua, for allegedly ordering police officers to beat up some people at Bolero Trading Centre in the district.

In a three-page letter petitioning Mutharika, the communities claim that police officers stormed some houses at Bolero early this month and harassed men for unknown reasons.

After presenting the petition through Rumphi District Commissioner (DC), the group’s chairperson, Jolly Gondwe, said the officers injured some people suspected to belong to Joseph Bongololo camp of Paramount Chief Chikulamayembe chieftaincy wrangle.

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“We feel that we are not protected. We expect police officers to provide security and not harass people. That is the reason we have demanded that the OC should be transferred. We cannot be living in fear in our own country,” Gondwe said.

The communities have threatened to hold demonstrations and vigils if their demands are not met in 21 days.

Rumphi DC, Fred Movete, received the petition and promised to deliver it to the Office of President and Cabinet.

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However, Movete advised the people that the ultimatum will not work as civil servants are on festive holiday.

Kaluwa refused to comment on the matter.

Recently, Kaluwa distanced the police from the beating up of people, saying the officers went to arrest suspects who torched Chikulamayembe office in protest against the installation of Mtima Gondwe as the Tumbuka King.

One of the victims, Flatter Mhango, said he was beaten by police officers who came at midnight early this month.

“The police hit me forcing me into their vehicle. They failed because I held on to a tree and communities came to rescue me after my wife shouted for help,” Mhango said.

The Bongolo camp went to court protesting the government’s decision to install Mtima Gondwe as Paramount Chief Chikulamayembe.

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