People’s Party (PP) spokesperson and administrative secretary, Kenneth Msonda, has been summoned by the Blantyre Resident Magistrate Court to appear before it on January 21, 2016 to answer a charge of inciting others to commit a crime when he called on Malawians to kill people believed to be practising homosexuality.
This is as a result of a complaint filed at the Resident Magistrate Court sitting in Blantyre by leaders of two civil society organisations leaders Timothy Mtambo of the Centre for Human Rights and Rehabilitation (CHRR) and Gift Trapence of Centre for the Development of People (Cedep).
According to a complaint notice which is part of the documents presented before the court, Trapence and Mtambo, through their lawyers Khumbo Soko and Gift Nankhuni, say they have taken this position being lawful citizens of the country and believing from a reasonable cause that an offence has been committed by Msonda.
“We also aspire to live in a country where rights of all persons are guaranteed to them regardless of their sexual orientation or indeed any other status,”reads the affidavit also serving as part of the file presented before Senior Resident Magistrate Peter Kandulu. Both Mtambo and Trapence were present at the Blantyre Resident Magistrate Court.
In an interview at the court, Mtambo said Msonda is in fact a candidate for the International Criminal Court (ICC) because he is inciting others to commit crime against humanity which can lead to genocide.
The summons come following a January 2, 2016 posting of Msonda on his Facebook page where he stated that government should come clean on the issues of gays and lesbians.
“Gays and Lesbians are worse than dogs; sons and daughters of the evil one-Jabulosi their father,” says Msonda on his post.
“Arresting them won’t address this problem because sooner or later they are being released on bail, the best way to deal with problem is to kill them,” declared Msonda.
Mtambo and Trapence have printed out the positing and provided it to the court as part of the evidence.
They also claim that in subsequent interviews with various media outlets, Msonda maintained his statement and the two have also provided the transcript of the interview Msonda had with Joy Radio’s Henry Haukeya as well as a radio recording of the same.
“It is our reasonable and sincere belief and understanding of the law of theRepublic of Malawi that such conduct is an offence under section 124 (1)(b) of the Penal Code (inciting another to contravene the law),” says the two in their affidavit, adding:
“It is further an exhortation to contravene, among others, section 19 and 20 of the Constitution as well as the ethos on which our Constitution is founded.”
Trapence and Mtambo then prays that the court should find that there are sufficient reasons for summoning Msonda to the court to answer a charge of inciting another to contravene the law contrary to section 124 (1)(b) of the Penal Code.
They have since produced draft summons and charge sheet in terms of section 83(6) of the Criminal Procedure and Evidence Code.
In an interview yesterday afternoon, Msonda said he was yet to get any communication on the matter.
“Now we know who homosexuals in Malawi are; these two gangsters you have mentioned should not hide behind minority group advocating; if they themselves are homosexuals they should just come out,” said Msonda.
He then called upon Malawi Police Service to arrest these people because he says “they are inciting people to break the law” because “homosexuality is a crime in Malawi that’s why those who engage in these devilish acts are being arrested.”
Msonda further argued that Mtambo and Trapence are not advocating for minority rights.
“We have a lot of minorities in Malawi; the albinos, the dwarfs are minorities, why are they concentrating on homosexuality which is a crime in Malawi. I am waiting for their summons and I will meet them in court,” he challenged.