Malawi Army, Police to Respect Human Rights During Lockdown

By Manasse Nyirenda

Malawi Police Service Acting Inspector of General, Duncan Mwapasa and Malawi Defense Force Commander, General Peter Namathanga have assured Malawians that their rights will be respected in the enforcement of a lockdown that comes into effect on Saturday midnight.

The two law enforcement leaders were speaking on Thursday at a press briefing at the National Police Headquarters in Lilongwe to orient Malawians on how the two agencies will enforce the lock down aimed at curbing the spread coronavirus.

While assuring Malawians that enforcement of the lockdown will be done according to the dictates of the law, Mwapasa asked Malawians to comply with the guidelines and stay at home.

“We will work in compliance with human rights. However, in some cases where we are required to use force to arrest the situation, the police officers may use minimal force as prescribed in the law,” he said.

On his part MDF boss, General Namathanga said his officers would assist the police to ensure that the lockdown is enforced.

Namathanga also asked Malawians to follow the guidelines prescribed by health experts such as hand washing and social distancing to be safe.

Commenting on how markets will be managed, Mawapasa said while the main markets such as Lilongwe and Blantyre will be closed, markets in the locations will still be open within a prescribed time to serve the people.

“Local markets such as Area 25 will be open from 6am to 2pm every day. Once people have bought their necessities, they are requested to go back home and avoid unnecessary travel.

“We do not expect somebody from Area 25 to go to Kawale market. That will not be allowed,” said Mwapasa.

Malawi has recorded 16 cases of Coronavirus. There are over 2,069,819 confirmed cases of the virus with over 137,000 deaths.

Across the world there are now over 2,069,819 confirmed cases of the virus with over 137,000 deaths.-MANA