Mpiri Catholic Primary School in Machinga Torched

Mpiri school torched

Wrangles between Christians and Muslims continue to rage on in the Eastern region as Catholic owned Mpiri Primary School in Machinga has remained closed for about two weeks.

To worsen the situation, some unknown community members, suspected to be Muslims on the night of Wednesday torched the office of school's head teacher.

The closure of the school followed wrangles that erupted between Muslims and the school management due to disagreements over allowing muslim female pupils to wear a Hijab.

Mangochi Diocese Education Coordinator Felix Masamba confirmed the incident to and added that the school actually closed earlier than the rest of the schools.

“As you know there has been a fight about Hijab, as a church we don’t encourage selective education. We want equality among the pupils, but our friends [the  Muslims] want their girls to be dressed up in Hijab at a Christian school, which is not good,” Masamba said.

He added that classes were also suspended from the first day schools re-opened following chaos that he alleges their Muslims counterparts started.

He  added that should the tensions continue, the church might be forced to pull away from its agreement with the Government and privatise the running of the school.

Masamba did not say how much has been lost through the fire.

Machinga Police station Public Relations officer Gift Sulumba asked for more time to comment on the development. 

Misunderstandings over the wearing of Hijabs have flared up lately particularly in the predominantly Muslim Eastern region of Malawi.

The initial turmoil involved, Mmanga primary school in Balaka run by Anglicans where muslims and Christians exchanged blows leading to its closure.