Gender activists march over Msundwe rapes


The NGO Gender Coordination Network (NGO-GCN) has organized demonstrations today in Lilongwe to protest against the rape of women and girls by police officers.

Joseph Njala, NGO-GCN coordinator, said the main purpose of the demonstrations is to send a strong message that people are angry over the sexual abuse.

“We are going to march so that the message goes far even outside the country and action should be taken as soon as possible because these allegations are serious and these are some of the conditions we want the inquiry to acknowledge,” he said.

Protesters are expected to march this morning from Central Roundabout to Parliament Roundabout and then to Civic Offices.

According to Njala, a petition addressed to President Peter Mutharika will be delivered to Lilongwe City Council.

On October 8, residents of Mpingu and Msundwe mounted illegal roadblocks on the Mchinji-Lilongwe road. The Police rushed to the scene to disperse the group but one of the police officers Usuman Imedi was killed during the fracas.

The next day, officers were deployed to Mpingu, M’bwatalika and Msundwe trading centres to arrest suspects.

Almost 43 people were arrested. Out of these, 39 have been granted bail while four are expected to appear in courts since they have been charged with murder.

According to NGO-GCN, when the police went to arrest the suspected people in those places, women and self-boarding secondary school girls were raped and tortured by officers.