Irate charcoal traders last week beat to death a 54-year-old patrol man working for the Department of Forestry as he, in a company of fellow workers, tried to confiscate charcoal bags around Lirangwe Area in Blantyre.
The incident occurred on Tuesday night along Lundu-Masamba Road when the angry vendors brutally assaulted the official, Foster Sankhulani.
The angry mob also managed to seize a rifle which was later returned to the Department of Forestry officials after the fracas.
Chileka Police Station spokesperson Grace Mwale confirmed the development, saying the man died at Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital (QECH) where he was referred.
Mwale said on the day, Sankhulani was conducting patrols with workmates in the area when they met the angry charcoal seller who assaulted him heavily before being taken to hospital.
“The deceased sustained serious injuries. He was taken to Mlambe Hospital before being referred to QECH where he died last Friday while receiving treatment. No arrests have been made so far but we have launched manhunt to bring to book the perpetrators,” she said.
Spokesperson for the Department of Environmental Affairs in the Ministry of Natural Resources, Energy and Mining, Sangwani Phiri also confirmed the incident in an interview.
“The Department of Forestry has lost a dedicated person who was one of the law enforcement team for the South,” said Phiri.
Sankhulani hailed from Mulima Village, Traditional Authority Kuntaja in Blantyre. He was laid to rest on Saturday and the Ministry of Natural Resources, Energy and Mining accorded him a gun-salute.