Police have admitted that they are being overwhelmed by a gang of robbers who are terrorising motorists on the M1 Road, especially around Lizulu and Njolomole areas in Ntcheu.
Ntcheu Police Station spokesperson Hastings Chigalu said in an interview on Monday that the thugs have now become sophisticated and that the spate of attacks has escalated since January this year.
According to Chigalu, despite law enforcers mounting ad-hoc roadblocks every evening as well as intensifying patrols, the robbers continue with the attacks.
“It is worrying that after the attacks died down following the arrest and sentencing of six others last year, the attacks have started again. We are doing everything possible as police but the robbers have become sophisticated and they now monitor police movements and are still terrorising the motorists,” he said.
He, however, said police is making progress as evidenced by recent arrests of four suspects who are answering two charges of robbery contrary to Section 201 and internationally endangering safety of persons travelling by road contrary to Section 237(c) of the Penal Code.
The suspects are Yona Wadson, Linot Bannet, James Baxter Machilika and a minor aged 16 who is in Standard 7. All the suspects come from Kaiya Village, Traditional Authority (T/A) Chakhumbira in Ntcheu.
In November last year, the Ntcheu Magistrate’s Court sentenced six people to eight years imprisonment each for blocking the M1 Road with big stones.
The six, who were answering similar charges, were also blocking the road during the night with the aim of attacking motorists and stealing from them. n