Women Lawyers secure justice for Msundwe women

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High Court Judge Kenyatta Nyirenda has ordered that that the women and girls of Msundwe who were raped and molested by Police should be compensated for all the pain and trauma they suffered.

Justice Nyirenda read out the judgement in Lilongwe on Thursday.

He also ruled that an assessment of how much they should be compensated should be done within 21 days by the Registar of the High Court.

He also ordered that the Police must investigate the case and submit a report to court within 30 days of the judgment.

The Police have also been ordered to submit the occurrence book to Court within 14 days.

The Police Complaints Commission has already been advertised by Parliament.

The respondents-Malawi Police, the Minister of Finance have also been ordered to pay the costs in the case.

In its report, the Malawi Human Rights Commission (MHRC) said it established that police officers raped 13 women, defiled one girl and sexually-assaulted three under-18 girls during their October 8 2019 operation around the area.

Women Lawyers Association (WLA) of Malawi took legal action against the Malawi Police Service over its officers who allegedly raped women in and around Msundwe area along the Lilongwe-Mchinji Road in October, 2020.

The association's president Tadala Chimkwezule said the women lawyers were compelled to take the legal action because "the police has clearly abdicated its responsibility and constitutional duty".

In a letter addressed to the acting police Inspector General Duncan Mwapasa, Chinkwezule says the inaction by the police was wrong, illegal and unlawful and deprives the concerned women and girls of their right to access justice.

Details to follow