Two days after he led a ‘naked’demonstration in Lilongwe for the cause of people with albinism in the country, Mulanje South Member of Parliament Bon Kalindo was yesterday chased from a rally President Peter Mutharika addressed at Limbuli in Mulanje.
Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) gurus—regional governor for the South Charles Mchacha and secretary general Ecklem Kudontoni—dressed down Kalindo in the presence of Mutharika, saying he is not part and parcel of the party for going ahead with the ‘naked’ demonstration.
Kalindo, who last evening claimed to be in hiding, said the party’s cadets warned him not to take his seat at the podium but said he challenged them that as long as he was a party official and the rally was taking place in Mulanje, he was going to be there.
Said Kalindo: “But after my colleagues, Hon Mchacha and Kudontoni, dressed me down in the presence of the President, officer-in-charge (OC) for Mulanje Police Station came and advised me to leave the place.
“This was after the President was about to speak. She warned me that my security was under threat. I listened and about eight police officers escorted me out of the place. I am in hiding and I don’t know what to do.”
Kalindo, a comedian and an actor popularly known as Winiko, said he was surprised that his colleagues are angry with him.
But OC for Mulanje Police Edith Misuli played down Kalindo’s fears that his life was under threat, saying she never told him that his life was under threat.
Misuli, in a telephone interview, said she was approached by Kalindo’s relation who asked about his whereabouts and only sent a message to the MP that his relation was looking for him.
But Kalindo, who delivered his petition to Parliament during Thursday’s demonstration, said looking at the circumstances, he understood the OC’s claims, repeating that he was warned his life was in danger and was given the police escort before he went into hiding.
Mchacha, who is also an MP for Thyolo West, said in interview, by proceeding with the ‘naked’ demonstration, his colleague was dramatising a serious issue which the President, his party, government and other stakeholders were addressing.
“When a parent speaks, you listen. This is not drama. We are doing a lot to end this problem where our friends with albinism are being killed and victimised. As a senior member of the party, a deputy publicity secretary, you cannot go out there and lead a ‘naked’ demonstration.
“We have sat him down on several other issues, but he doesn’t listen. We will find a way forward to address this,” Mchacha said.
Kudontoni, in the presence of Mutharika and Kalindo, told the rally that Kalindo was not part of the DPP because he was doing something contrary to the party’s position.
In his speech, Mutharika said people with albinism are Malawians that deserve security; hence, government will not relent on ensuring that their rights are protected.
On developmental issues, the President said DPP would continue with the infrastructure development, citing construction of the Phalombe-Chiringa Road as a direct response to Senior Chief Mabuka who asked government to seriously consider the road in question. n