A Malawian national based in South Africa claims that Malawi Immigration officers at the Malawi border posts and officials from Malawi Embassy in South Africa demand bribes from Malawian returnees.
The self-proclaimed UTM member Amos Chisisi has made the claims and has asked the Tonse Government to immediately look into the matter.
In a leaked recorded conversation with Minister of Gender Patricia Kaliati, Chisisi said when coming from South Africa on self-repatriation Malawians are demanded to pay R100 (about 5000) to get their passports stamped at the Malawi border.
He added that officials from the Malawi Embassy in South Africa demand R850 (about K43,000) to issue travelling documents to Malawians seeking to travel back home yet the officials report to the government that the travellers got the documents for free.
“We are suffering but we are not getting assisted by the authorities. The government allocated money (K535 million was allocated in August last year for repatriation of Malawians) but we pay for our own transport fares and this raises questions,” said Chisisi.
He added that he would love the president of Malawi to appoint Kaliati as Minister of Homeland because she is very courageous and would deliver.
In her responce, Kaliati assured Chisisi that she will meet the Minister responsible for Homeland Security and provide feedback.
Chisisi also called Minister of National Unity Timothy Mtambo to raise the same concerns saying the Police and Immigration Officers hold the passport when a person refuses to pay the bribe.
“I am asking you to urge the Minister Chimwendo to conduct surprise visits at the borders. We need you to help us because we are being robbed,” said Chisisi.
Responding to the issue, Mtambo wondered why travellers are demanded to pay money at the border. He said he will meet the minister responsible.
“I understand, actually I will have the meeting with the minister responsible and raise the issue the minister, they are very important,” he said.
Since the start of the Coronavirus pandemic, Malawi has repatriated over 10,000 Malawians from South Africa.