Human rights activist Billy Mayaya has said that the arrest of two Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) Gift Trapence and reverend Mcdonald Sembereka was political persecution.

Trapence and Sembereka were arrested yesterday over money fraudulent.

According to Trapence, they have been arrested for running a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) which is not registered with the NGO board.

However Malawi Police through the national police spokesperson James Kadadzera has refuted the allegation saying the arrest of the two is purely a criminal matter.

“There was a complaint from an international NGO that the two embedded K7 Million deposited in the project accounts of UNAIDS,” said Kadadzera.

“UNAIDS complained of the misappropriated funds,” he added.

According to Trapence the organization in question is Mango Key Populations Network run by Sembereka.

The arrest of the two came in barely after few days when President Peter Mutharika warned CSOs that they will pay accordingly for turning Malawi into a lawless society.

The CSOs under the banner Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC) have been organizing demonstrations calling for resignation of Malawi Electoral Commission Chairperson Jane Ansah who is being accused of, mismanaging May 21 presidential vote results.

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ZIMENE MUMAKONDA

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