Malawi: 7 Cops Injured As Police, Vendors Clash in Karonga Demos - Roadblock Set On Fire

10 December 2019

Irate protesters in Karonga have battled with police, setting on fire a roadblock at Rukuru as traders protested against Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA) roadblocks in the district.

The protesters said they took the drastic action to burn the Rukuru roadblock and chase away police officers manning it because of the failure by MRA officials to look into their grievances which they had presented to them two weeks ago.

Earlier, a move by villagers from Mwanjawala tried in vain to stop their friends from proceeding with their decision to remove the road block.

Karonga business community say there are just numerous MRA roadblock blocks that are collecting money from cross-border traders on M1 road between Songwe border and Chilumba and they want Iponga MRA, Rukuru Police, Ipyana Police and Chilumba MRA road blocks removed.

According to the group's chairperson Goodwin Ghambi, they decided to go to the street after MRA and police failed to respond to their concerns when they gave the tax-collecting body three weeks to address them.

The ugly scenes started at Rukuru road block where there were running battles between police and demonstrators who overpowered the police and snatched four riffles and tear gass carnisters, injuring seven police officers in the process.

The cops were rushed to Karonga District Hospital but they had been treated as out- patients.

Karonga Police Station officer in-charge assistant commissioner Sam Nkhwazi confirmed the police officers were severely injured .

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