Malawi Police fire teargas inside Queens Hospital


…Activist Billy Mayaya assaulted

Police in Blantyre this morning fired teargas inside Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital, a major referral hospital in the Southern Region.

The incident happened after clashes between protesters and Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) where Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC) member Billy Mayaya was also assaulted.

Mayaya: assaulted

The chaotic scenes erupted after the anti-Jane Ansah protesters met along the Masauko Chipembere Highway.

The two groups pelted stones at each other and some protesters run to a Malawi Defence Force camp to seek refuge while others fled to Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital premises.

Police officers rushed to the scene where they followed the demonstrators to the hospital and fired teargas inside the hopital premises.

A pregnant woman fainted outside the hospital due to the smoke and was taken to safety by protesters.

Mayaya who was leading the demonstrators suffered cuts to the head in the chaos and was taken to Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital.

He later wrote on social media that he was “attacked with stones and an iron bar.”

After the protesters were dispersed, Police provided security to DPP supporters who marched from the Trade Fair Grounds to Blantyre Central Business District.

The protesters had planned to march to Mount Soche Hotel to petition Electoral Commissions Forum for SADC countries (ECF-SADC) delegates attending a conference at the hotel.

The demonstrators want Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) chairperson Jane Ansah who is also ECF-SADC president to resign accusing her of failing to stop irregularities in the May 21 elections.

DPP leader Peter Mutharika was declared winner in the presidential elections.