Malawi police arrest ex-ministers following Mutharika’s ‘s death inquiry report

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LILONGWE, March 11 (Xinhua) — Malawi police early on Monday arrested former ministers and former President Mutharika’s Guard Commander over their alleged involvement in issues surrounding Muthrika’s death and transition of power.

Those arrested include former Information Minister, Patricia Kaliati, former Local Government Minister, Henry Mussa, former Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister, Kondwani Nankhumwa, and former Mutharika’s Guard Commander, Duncan Mwapatsa.

Malawi Police spokesperson Rhoda Manjolo confirmed the arrests to local media but she could not shade more light on the charges the ex-officials face.

Meanwhile, confirmed reports say the Police have also issued warrant of arrest for former Foreign Affairs Minister, Peter Mutharika, brother to late President Mutharika and Acting President for Mutharika’s Democratic Progressive Party (DPP).

Peter Mutharika’s Personal Assistant, Ben Phiri, confirmed the development to local media saying the police surrounded Mutharika’ s residence in the capital at dawn of Monday but the former Minister was down in Blantyre.

Phiri said Mutharika would hand himself in to Police in Blantyre later in the day.

Phiri also confirmed the arrests of the rest of other ministers saying they were rounded up between 04:00 and 05:00 local time.

According to Mutharika’s personal assistant, Kaliati is kept at Lilongwe Police Station while the rest are at Chichiri Central Prison in Blantyre.

The report on issues surrounding President Mutharika’s death and succession of power also implicated current Minister of Economic Planning and Development, Goodall Gondwe, and Chief Secretary to the State, Charles Msaka.

Reports say Gondwe has also been taken by police for questioning.

Mutharika’s death on April 5, 2012 was shrouded in a lot of secrecy and the report implicates Msaka, Gondwe, and the young Mutharika to have been in the center stage in efforts to prevent President Joyce Banda, Vice President then, to take over.

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