Police crashes with CSTU members at Capital Hill; members called to meet with Chief Secretary

There was tension on Tuesday between police and members of the Civil Service Trade Union (CSTU), at Capital Hill in Lilongwe over the meeting organized by the CSTU.

The meeting was aimed at eliciting the views of CSTU members over Government decision to raise their salaries by ten percent in the 2017-2018 national budget.

After being informed of the development, police mounted a checkpoint at the entrance gate of Capital Hill with the aim of blocking the CSTU members who came to attend the meeting.

There was another group of heavily armed police inside the gate, preparing to disperse the CSTU members and prevent them from holding their meeting.

In the process of holding the meeting, police arrested two CSTU members, who were mobilizing their friends to go to the meeting at the car park of Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development.

The two are Jones Kuntumanji and Jonas Savimbi, who were apprehended by at least 20 police, before they started to call the people to the meeting.

This angered CSTU members, who demanded the release of their colleagues, and threatened they would not leave the place.

CSTU General Secretary Madalitso Njolomole, accused the police of intimidating their members.

After the CSTU leadership finished their emergency meeting with the Chief Secretary to the Government Lloyd Muhara, CSTU President Servace Sakala held discussions with police to release the CSTU member. This however took almost an hour before police released the CSTU members.

The law enforcers released the two CSTU members only after notating that other CSTU members to leave the premise until their colleagues were released.

Malawi police national spokesperson James Kadadzera, however refused to comment on the matter, and said he did not know anything about the incidents on Capital Hill.

On the issue concerning the ten percent salary increment, the CSTU President said the Union does not accept the meager increase which the minister said would be given on merit.

He therefore said CSTU leadership will on Thursday meet with Government to further negotiate the matter.

The CSTU members threatened to start a country-wide strike on Monday, if the Government fails to honour their request byFriday.

 

 

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