MHRC Calls For Police Professional Conduct

Newly elected Chairperson of the Malawi Human Rights Commission Reverend Patrick Semphere (R) during his swearing in Newly elected Chairperson of the Malawi Human Rights Commission Reverend Patrick Semphere (R) during his swearing in ZBS Crew

The Malawi human rights commission has called upon the Malawi police service to be professional and independent.

Speaking to Zodiak on Sunday, newly elected Chairperson of the Malawi Human Rights Commission Reverend Patrick Semphere says the Malawi Police Service has to walk the talk with regards to defending the laws and rights of citizens by being professional and independent.

The remarks follow the arrest of three leaders of Human Rights Defenders Coalition Timothy Mtambo, Gift Trapence and McDonald Sembereka last week, who were arrested hours after president Mutharika threatened to deal with them during a political rally in Blantyre.

“We do not condone politically motivated arrest that is against the law, the police need to act professionally and independently and that the mandate they have according to the law,” he said.

Semphere added the MHRC is confident justice on the three activists will be served through the court.

“As a commission we are glad that the 3 were charged and released and we have confidence in the competence and independence of the court that the HRDC members will be able to receive their trial,” he added.

National police spokesperson, James Kadadzera dismissed claims the law enforcers adhere to political instructions.

“The remarks made by the 3 HRDC leaders are against some of the laws of Malawi, we are looking at the penal code and the police act, so it is basically law enforcement,” he said.

The 3 are currently on bail and were arrested on charges of inciting others to commit an offence when they threatened to mobilize Malawians to seal all State Residences on 25th March.

Meanwhile, several international bodies such as the Southern Africa Human Rights Defending Network have condemned the arrest of the three HRDC leaders, calling upon President Peter Mutharika to address the current political impasse and assenting to the electoral reforms bill other than threatening the rights activists.

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Last modified on Monday, 16/03/2020

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