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Traditional Authority challenges police transfers

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By Yohane Symon:

Traditional Authority (T/A) Makanjira of Mangochi District has challenged the removal of 14 police officers from Makanjira Police Unit, saying the move might compromise security in his area.

Makanjira on Thursday said his subjects are worried with Malawi Police Service’s decision, considering disagreements between his people and neighbouring Mozambique communities.

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Makanjira people and their Mozambique counterparts have been at loggerheads due to a border re-affirmation exercise which took place in 2008.

It is alleged that Mozambique extended its boundary to Malawi, leading to the loss of nationality of people from 12 villages which are now deemed to be living in Mozambique.

At the climax of the wrangle, a 32-year-old Malawian man was shot dead by Mozambican security forces who were patrolling areas previously belonging to Malawi.

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Makanjira said the transfer of the police officers would expose the area to more attacks.

“I appeal to the authorities to leave some of the police officers behind because we want them to transfer the knowledge of this area to their colleagues. Transferring all officers would expose us to our opponents,” Makanjira said.

Makanjira said he has written Mangochi Police Station on the matter and expects the law enforcers to consider his concerns.

But Mangochi Police publicist, Roderick Maida, said he was not aware of the T/A’s letter to the police station.

Eastern Region Police spokesperson, Joseph Sauka, said they would only comment on the matter after getting the T/A’s official complaint.

He insisted that the transfers are normal and were done in the interest of Makanjira people.

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