The funeral ceremony for Alinafe Bonongwe, Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA) Station Manager Dedza Border Post, was held yesterday in Nkhotakota, days after he was murdered at his home in Dedza.
Bonongwe was found dead in the bathroom at his house on February 4. A postmortem showed that he died after being assaulted.
Speaking during the funeral, representatives of his family said they have lost a key pillar of their family.
“He was the one we looked up to when faced with several issues here in the village,” said one family member at the funeral.
“We pray that God should expose all people involved in Alinafe’s death,” said another family member.
An MRA customs officer representing MRA employees at Dedza Border Post said Bonongwe was working well with his juniors and he never looked down on any of the employees.
Representing the business community in Dedza, Gerald Kampanikiza said Bonongwe used to travel to Lilongwe every Friday and on February 5 he started his journey but reportedly returned to Dedza after receiving a phone call.
He added that he wrote on his Facebook page in the past that there were threats against Bonongwe who was known for his efforts to stop smuggling.
“We are hopeful that the Police will investigate this issue to find those who murdered Bonongwe,” said Kampanikiza.
MRA Deputy General Commissioner Henry said the murder of Bonongwe is meant to instill fear in workers of the tax collection authority.
He, however, urged MRA workers to remain resolute in providing services. He added that MRA will review its security protocol in order to protect officers in key stations.
On Twitter, Journalist Jack McBrams described Alinafe as a good man and called on authorities to investigate the matter.
Last week, President Lazarus Chakwera described Bonongwe as a warrior for justice. He noted that despite receiving death threats for standing up to lawlessness and corrupt cartels at the borders, Bonongwe remained resolute and fearless in his defence of our national treasures.
“Mr Bonongwe has died a hero, and his sacrifice for Malawi will not be in vain, for it gives all of us fresh inspiration to press on with our quest for a new Malawi free of corruption,” Chakwera said in a statement.