Minister of Homeland Security Nicholas Dausi says costs of property damaged during the June 20 demonstrations and other costs of post-elections demonstrations will be borne by opposition Malawi Congress Party (MCP) and the Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC).
Speaking on Monday in Parliament while delivering a ministerial statement on political violence and its effects on socio-economic development, the minister said people were harassed and property looted during the demonstrations.
He said: “To ensure that government, through Malawi Police Service, executes its mandate in a manner that is expected by all, police is investigating and ensuring that all perpetrators of incidents of violence are prosecuted and brought to justice. We are counting the cost of all properties damaged or stolen and a compensation for those injured. We will present this to MCP and HRDC.” he said.
But in response, MCP secretary general Eisenhower Mkaka said in an interview it is absurd for a minister to be making such statements in Parliament
He said: “He [Dausi] said that they are investigating, at one time and on the other time he says he will make us pay, why is that so? We wonder why they want to bring the bill to us when it’s Malawians who demonstrated to express their anger,” he said.
On his part, HRDC vice-chairperson Gift Trapence said in a separate interview they will wait for official communication from the ministry.
“We can’t comment on the issue now, we will wait for an official communication from the said minister,” he said.
MCP has been holding protests following the announcement of presidential results last month.
On June 20, MCP and UTM Party joined nationwide protests organised by HRDC demanding the resignation of MEC chairperson Jane Ansah for election irregularities.
During the protests, property was destroyed and some police officers assaulted.