The year 2015 has registered more fatal motor traffic road accidents as compared to last year, according to Malawi Police Service (MPS).
The development has primarily been attributed to increased cases of people driving under the influence of alcohol, over speeding and use of unfit vehicles.
Speaking in Blantyre during Christmas and New Year’s party for senior police officers from Southern Region on Saturday night, Senior Deputy Commissioner of Police Merlyne Yolamu, who is based at the National Police Headquarters, said 8 195 accidents were registered in 2015 as compared to 7 860 in 2014, representing a four percent increase.
“Traffic management has been an area of concern and this can be attributed to increased numbers of vehicles on our roads coupled with drive and drink cases, over speeding and use of unroadworthy vehicles,” said Yolamu who represented Inspector General (IG) of Police Lexten Kachama.
However, the police have managed to contain violent crimes, including murders, armed robberies, breakings, theft of motor vehicles, among others, after successfully destroying criminal syndicates and arresting the culprits.
During 2015, police recorded 15 151 cases of violent crimes compared to 15 470 in 2014. The registered difference of 319 cases represents a two percent decrease in violent crimes.
“The reduction has been achieved due to collective efforts of all players in the criminal justice system including members of the general public,” said Yolamu.
The IG representative also warned police officers against engaging in criminal acts such as corruption and robberies.
In 2015, a number of officers were seen taking part in armed robberies and some of them are still answering to charges in courts.
Said Yolamu: “Our conduct is highly motivated by the public hence we must maintain a character that is above reproach. To those that continue these malpractices, this administration will not tolerate that and the law will take its course.”
On his part, Southern Region police chief Demister Chigwenembe also bemoaned the unprofessional conduct of some police officers.
He, however, commended his officers for successfully apprehending some hardcore criminals and securing their convictions.
During the event, the Southern Region Police headquarters also honoured several police stations that performed well in the year which saw Blantyre Police becoming the overall best performer in 2015 and went away with a certificate and trophy. n