There was pandemonium at MEC headquarters in Blantyre yesterday after some an unidentified roughnecks manhandled former Minister of Homeland Security Nicholas Dausi in full view of State security.
The Democratic Progress Party (DPP) spokesperson was rescued by some Malawi Defence Force (MDF) and Malawi Police Service (MPS) officers after few punches landed on him.
The DPP spokesperson sustained a bruised right hand and lost some blood before seeking treatment at the nearby Mwaiwathu Private Hospital.
The men who attacked him were at the MEC offices, where they had escorted a truck suspected to have carried ballot papers from Chikwawa at a time Malawians are anxiously waiting for results of the May 21 Tripartite Elections.
The men, together with Abida Mia, wife to MCP vice-president and running mate Sidik Mia and some party supporters, had escorted the truck from the Lower Shire.
Apparently, the truck, registration TPE 2611, was assigned to transport election materials but was detained by police at Bereu in Chikwawa after observing that it had no security escort and MEC officials on board. Chikwawa Police later released three officers to be part of the escort.
Mia and the escort vehicles were joined by a fleet of vehicles of MCP well-wishers at the Catholic Institute (CI) Primary School and drove all the way to MEC offices through Chipembere Highway.
In an interview, Mia said they were tipped by a police officer that the vehicle was carrying ballot boxes without MEC officials and security personnel; “hence; our interest to make a follow up.”
She said: “Upon reaching the place, police advised that the vehicle be escorted by MEC officers so that we see the stuff it was transporting. But what stunned us was the presence of two DPP officials Ben Khuleya and Gerald Viola, who were trailing the vehicle.”
Efforts to seek reactions from Khuleya and Viola proved futile as the two were reportedly detained by Abida Mia’s security personnel.
On his part, Dausi said he met his fate at MEC offices after receiving an invitation to go and represent his party to witness what the vehicle was carrying.
“After getting off my vehicle, I saw MCP thugs and hooligans chasing me and attacking me. In the ensuing scuffle I injured my hand but thank God, I had to protect myself; otherwise, it could have been worse,” said Dausi in his usual breezy mood.
But Mia distanced her party from Dausi’s attack, saying she was not aware of the lawlessness as it occurred while she was inside MEC offices. The situation brought commotion as it resulted in the temporary closure of the Magalasi Road.
When MEC officials opened the vehicle, in the presence of representatives of various political parties, it transpired that the stuff it carried were leftover polling materials, and not necessarily ballot papers as suspected.