503 injured in demos—Red Cross

Malawi Red Cross Society has reported 503 cases of injuries among protesters during this week’s demonstrations to force Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) chairperson Jane Ansah to resign for allegedly presiding over a flawed electoral process.

In an interview yesterday, Malawi Red Cross communications manager Felix Washon said the cases were spread across the three cities of Blantyre, Mzuzu and Lilongwe where this week’s demonstrations were held.

But he ruled out any beating as being the cause of some of the injuries inflicted on protesters.

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Said Washon: “The injuries were mostly wounds, cuts, twisted legs and head pains.”

He said that on Tuesday alone, when the demonstrations were taking place in the three cities 266 were treated in Lilongwe. He said 178 were treated in Blantyre and 57 in Mzuzu.

Washon said 59 more were treated on Wednesday in Lilongwe where protesters caused mayhem following an overnight vigil held at Kamuzu Mausoleum at City Centre.

In an earlier interview with The Nation, Malango indicated that Kamuzu Central Hospital (KCH) received eight cases of injuries on Tuesday.

During Tuesday’s demonstrations organised by the Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC), violence marred the protests, especially in Mzuzu and Lilongwe.

In Lilongwe, a section of the protesters looted and vandalised shops predominantly owned by small and medium enterprises as well as public and private sector offices. Innocent premature babies in the Kangaroo Wing of Bwaila Hospital had to be evacuated to safety as police tear gas had engulfed the hospital premises in Lilongwe’s Old Town.

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