Malawi: Lawmaker seeks protection from Speaker

Independent Member of Parliament for Lilongwe Msozi North Godfrey Kanyama has asked Speaker of Parliament Chimunthu Banda for protection after he was attacked by alleged Malawi Congress Party (MCP) followers.


Kanyama was reportedly attacked by MCP sympathisers at Lilongwe City Centre on Monday around 11:30am as he came out of Parliament offices in Chief Mmbelwa Building .

The independent Parliamentarian is one of the law makers advocating for change of Parliamentary Standing Orders with an aim of giving chance to the members in the House to elect leader of opposition than automatically endorsing MCP leader John Tembo as it is required.

Speaking in Parliament in line with Parliamentary Standing Order 53 on Tuesday, Kamanya asked the speaker for his protection and that of his whole family since it was also in danger.

Kanyama said although he escaped unhurt from the stone throwing attackers he feels insecure that he may be killed for contributing to Parliamentary deliberations. His car was also spared the damaged.

Mr. Speaker, Sir, I am asking for your protection. I do not fear death because some people died yesterday but I need protection for my family. I have a wife and daughter anything can happen to them.

Secondly, I am a young man and may want to defend myself. I can use any weapon and I dont want to be in the dock for trying to defend myself, said Kanyama.

The parliamentarian said he believed his aggressors were John Tembos supporters because as they threw stones at him they were shouting tithana nawe siulipo wekha (we will deal with you, you are not alone).

In his response, the speaker assured Kanyama that the matter would be thoroughly investigated and its outcome communicated to the House and the member.

During the incident, police arrested eight of the attackers and according to Lilongwe Police Public Relations Officer Ramsy Mshani the matter was still under investigations and more arrests were likely to follow.

But speaking earlier MCP Director of Research Lingson Belekanyama distanced his party and its leader John Tembo from the incident saying Mr Tembo was no way connected to the incident and could not sink so low to apply such tricks.

Meanwhile, a group of MCP supporters is set to march Wednesday morning and present a petition to their leader John Tembo calling for his resignation as party president.

Police gave permission on Tuesday to the marchers, led by former spokesman of the party, Ishmael Chafukila who is getting support from government to be elected leader of opposition.

The group was scheduled to hold a media conference on Wednesday morning in Lilongwe before marching to present the petition to the veteran disgruntled politician.

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