Two Malawian Journalists Arrested
Two Malawian journalists were arrested Thursday in the capital of Malawi, Lilongwe.
One Journalist, Maxwell Ng’ambi was arrested at the Maula maximum Prison while Chinyeke Tembo was arrested at the Lilongwe Police Station.
According to prison sources, Ng’ambi was arrested when he went to see the imprisoned United Democratic Front former publicity Secretary Sam Mpasu.
It is alleged that he started interviewing Mpasu without the authorization of the prison authorities. However, this could not be independently verified.
The prison authorities, after seeing that he was breaching prison regulations, arrested him and detained him for two hours before sending him to Lilongwe Police Station.
Meanwhile, the message had been passed to other journalists that their colleague had been arrested and they teamed up and went to see him at the Police Station.
One of his Colleagues was the coordinator for the Journalists Association Against Aids(Journ Aids) Chinyeke Tembo .
It is alleged that while at the Police Station , he saw a Police woman and loudly commented that she was very beautiful.
The Police who heard him speak immediately arrested him.
Tembo said he was beaten all over his body .He said he recognizes those that beat him up.
National Media Institute for Southern Africa(NAMISA) has condemned the arrests and has asked the police to immediately release the journalists.
Centre for Human Rights and Rehabilitaion Executive Director Undule Mwakasungula has condemned the arrests saying it is painting a bad picture of the country.
He said every time a journalist is arrested internationally it sends a bad signal.
Ng’ambi has been charged with giving false information to a public officer while Chinyeke has been charged with indecent assault, according to court sources.
The Government of Malawi has shown much commitment to ensure that there is freedom of speech and expression as evidenced by establishment of many newspapers and radio stations.
The commitment has also been shown by the State President inviting members of the press to the state house to ask him a number of questions on a number of areas of interest to the public.
However, the Police continue to arrest journalists. They say nobody is above the law.
Recently a journalist , belonging to the University of Malawi's Polytechnic was briefly detained by Police after he was found taking pictures of a police officer who was arrested by anti corruption bureau officers.
Tags: Malawi , Journalists , Prison , Maxwell Ng’ambi , Chinyeke Tembo
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