Jul 19, 2018 Last Updated 10:40 AM, Jul 19, 2018

The Police in the southern region district of Nsanje are keeping in custody two people for allegedly spreading rumours of blood sucking in the district.

The two are identified as Madalitso Hamuza and Ali Simbi both coming from Ndenguma Village in the area of Senior Chief Malemia.

The recent arrest brings the number of suspects to have committed such an offence in the district, to eight.

Nsanje district police publicist Agnes Zilakoma says the two have been arrested following allegations they leveled against a man who was talking to a friend on a mobile phone, claiming he is a blood sucking vampire.

According to Zilakoma, the two suspects then instructed a police officer who was nearby to arrest the man who was on the phone.

The suspects are expected to answer charges of circulating false news likely to cause fear and alarm to the public.

So far, over 200 people have been arrested since rumours started spreading early last month.

Thirteen people have been remanded to prison for allegedly inciting violence over blood sucking rumours in Malawi’s former capital, Zomba.

The suspects Enock Bomba aged 32, Edson Eleven, 33, Buton Manyenje aged 31 and ten others were arrested for allegedly inciting violence at Ndalama Health Post at Jali on the night of 22 October, 2017.

According to the State Prosecutor Louis Makiyi, the suspects mobilised themselves and attacked a team of employees from Save the Children who went to the area to drop off a Health Surveillance Assistant who was coming from a workshop.

The suspects are reported to have started stoning the officers, accusing them of being blood suckers who were planning to terrorize the area.

Makiyi says the police came in to rescue the officers after they were called and managed to arrest 13 suspects, of which seven are minors.

According to information sourced from the Eastern Region Police Public Relations Officer, Joseph Sauka, all the suspects have denied the charge of Conduct likely to cause a breach of peace levelled against them.

Senior Resident Magistrate Wyson Nkhata has adjourned the case to 30th October, 2017 to allow the state to notify its witnesses.

Law enforcers say they have arrested over at least 200 people for spreading rumours or being part of the vigilante groups that incited violence.

 National Police Deputy Spokesperson told Capital FM early this week that 55 were arrested at Bvumbwe in Thyolo district.

Some of the suspects have already appeared

President Mutharika has succumbed to pressure from the Civil Society and communities of Mulanje, Phalombe, Chiradzulu and Nsanje, who have been expressing concern over Mutharika’s silence on the alleged blood sucking attacks.

The President intends to visit the affected communities from Friday this week.

In a statement released by the Presidential Press Secretary Mgeme Kalirani, President Mutharika requests that the general public remain calm, as the government gets to the bottom of the matter.

At least seven people have been killed and others injured in attacks by villagers on persons they suspect of being or colluding with what they term ‘’blood suckers’’.

Mulanje District Hospital recently suspended its outreach clinics and operations of its ambulance service, as members of the community attacked the ambulance suspecting that it carried ‘’blood suckers’’.

The attacks are also affecting the Tourism and Medical industry as well as other social service with the latest reports indicating that three international NGOs have withdrawn their projects in Nsanje.

A report released on October 6th by the UN Department of Safety and Security indicates that it is alleged that these rumours originated from the neighbouring Mozambique, and spread across the borders to Mulanje and Phalombe.

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