Minister of Housing and Urban Development Symon Vuwa-Kaunda and Minister of Health and Population Jappie Mhango have warned people in Karonga against killing people suspected of practising witchcraft.
The ministers issued the warning on Saturday in Karonga at a stakeholders meeting since the destruction of houses and the killing of eight people last December in the district.
Said Mhango: “We came here to preach peace after noting that Karonga is slowly turning into a lawless district where brutal killings over witchcraft allegations are the order of the day.
“As government, we cannot fold our hands and watch. I, therefore, urge the police to thoroughly investigate and arrest anyone.”
Mhango also asked all stakeholders to join hands to sensitise the community, especially the youth, to dangers of violence.
The minister has since ordered authorities to exhume bodies of a couple killed in the attack that was buried in one grave to be given a decent burial.
On his part, Vuwa-Kaunda said government will construct houses for the elderly to ensure that they live in decent houses.
Speaking on behalf of civil society organisations, Federation of Disability Organisations in Malawi chairperson (North) Noah Simwaka asked stakeholders to restore peace, saying persons with physical disabilities are always victims of such violence.
Paramount Chief Kyungu thanked the ministers for the messages of peace and unity.
“We hope their coming here with the messages will stop the mob justice,” he said.
Karonga Diocese Justice and Peace desk officer Louis Nkhata commended the ministers for condemning the violence.
He said: “We are pleased that government came to preach peace. However, law enforcement agents have lost touch with communities.
“We, therefore, need more efforts to restore peace and the relationship that existed in the past to enforce security.”