Malawi: Police Abandon Protestors for Security, Malawi Army Soldiers Take Over

Protesters carry signs during a Jane Ansah solidarity march in Blantyre.
2 October 2019

Malawi Police have completely abandoned the anti-Jane Ansah protestors who are on second day of strong wave of demonstrations and the Malawi Defence Force (MDF) soldiers have now taken over the role of the law enforcers.

MDF soldiers protecting the protesters

The protest march started on low note as very few protestors braved the Wednesday Lilongwe chilly weather.

At the start of the protest march, the organisers, the Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC) and the Lilongwe city council officials clashed over the route to take as the organisers wanted the Old Town, Lilongwe Hotel then Paul Kagame Highway, Bwandilo, Area 18 roundabout, parliament then Capital Hill.

But the council wanted the protesters to start off from the community ground via Mchesi, then Kamuzu Central Hospital, parliament and Capital Hill.

The council officials and the HRDC then agreed on the Mchesi road and the marching is still going on.

HRDC chairperson Timothy Mtambo is attributing the low turn up of people for the march compared to Tuesday to the clashes yesterday between the police and the protesters.

All filling stations, some shops and offices are closed at City Centre following Tuesday's looting and destruction of property as the march turned violent.

The HRDC wants to force Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) chairperson Jane Ansah to resign following the highly disputed May 21 polls.

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