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Three days of mourning for Malawi Defence Force soldiers

The Malawi Defence Force (MDF) has said it will mourn the death of 21 soldiers who died following an accident in Mzimba on Thursday over a period of three days.

Three more soldiers were announced dead by Friday, adding to the 18 that were announced on Thursday.

During a memorial service held at Kamuzu Barracks in Lilongwe yesterday, President Peter Mutharika said the death of the recruits and instructors is a tragedy to the nation.

Eighteen were recruits while three were their instructors.

He said it is sad to note that the nation has lost men who were committed to serve the nation.

“In my life I never expected that this kind of tragedy could occur in our country. We have heard of this happening in other countries. Let us unite in this trying moment,” he said.

He further urged people to avoid speeding and use vehicles that are properly serviced to reduce road accidents in the country.

Mutharika condoled the bereaved families with K10.5 million while Vice President Saulos Chilima also consoled the families with some money.

MDF Deputy Commander Clement Namangale, who announced that there will be three days of mourning, said the MDF has lost professional instructors as well as people who could have had a great impact on MDF operations.

“There were over 2000 people including instructors who were coming from a final training in Luwawa Forest. To us this is a huge loss…it’s a disaster,” he said

The soldiers died after the vehicle they were traveling in overturned at Mapanjira in Mzimba.

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