By Joshua Morishu – FaceofMalawi Reporter
Following the demonstrations that took place in Malawi on the 20th and 21st July this year, the Malawi Regulatory Authority a body that looks unto all sorts of communications e.g Radios, tv, phones and so on had on the21st July ordered all private radio stations in the country to stop broadcasting on how demonstrations were going in the country. As Malawians were preparing to hold peaceful demonstrations slighted for the 20th July, on the 19th of it, the ruling DPP youth cadets brought business to a standstill in Blantyre city as they took to the street aboard the party’s branded pick up vehicles, brandishing machetes. As a repoter I managed to identify four Toyota Hilux pick up vehicles bearing DPP logos and slogans through registration plates as follows BP 8682, BP 8687, and BP 8667 And BP 8690.
The youth cadets were stopping in the middle of the road sharpening their machete and warned people to face unspecified consequences if they continue with their mind to hold demonstrations on the following day, instead of attending the state president’s republic lecture which was also going to happen the same day the demonstrations led by NGO’S were to be conducted.
As media practioner on the 20th July when the demonstrations started, all Malawians were listening to live broadcasting of the event. In the course of the demonstrations, angry people looted shops and many other properties belonged to government in anger following the delay by the high court to remove the injunction stopping them from demonstrations.
On the 21st July MACRA through a letter by Charles Nsuliwa ordered all the Radio stations which include starfm, ZBS, capital radio, joy and many more except MBC to stop broadcasting about the demonstrations saying they were inciting violence.
The Mother Radio Station MBC didn’t broadcast the event and Malawians were tuned in to private Radio Stations and on the very same day Joy Radio, Capital and Mij f.m were closed for at most 10hrs for continuing live broadcasting of the event.
At least 19 people most of them young ones were killed by the police, over 270 people were arrested and beaten up including journalists plus MHRCC chair person Undule Mwakasungula who got injured after being beaten up by the police.
Meanwhile reports have shown that both NGO’S and political parties are set for another mass demonstration to take place on 17th of august and President Mutharika has been given 3 days from 17th to have resigned from his position.