JB Pardons 377 Prisoners As Malawi Celebrates Its 48th Independence

Malawians on Friday gathered at Comesa Hall in Blantyre for the day-long prayers to mark 48 years of independence from Britain.

Malawi celebrates its independence without pomp and fanfare due to the financial problems that has rocked the country.

New President Mrs Joyce Banda, who came into power in April after the demise of late President Bingu wa Mutharika opted for the low-key celebrations saying there was no money for partying as the country is struggling from economic recovery which was messed up during the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) regime.

The prayers saw different religious leaders from different denominations asking God for the peaceful country.

Not missing on the list are Sheikh Idrissa Muhammad of Muslim Association of Malawi, Sheikh Sulaiman Jim of Qadria Association of Malawi as well as representatives for Muslim Women Organisation.

But as a usual, the prayers were dominated by Christians, the problem which other quarters attributed to the low a esteem of Muslims in the country.

President Banda has since pardoned 377 prisoners.

According to the statement released by affairs ministry, most of the inmates released had “served at least half of their prison sentences with good behaviour and were not convicted of serious crimes.”

Banda said her pardon excludes criminals facing serious charges including rape or any sexual offenses on young girls, carjacking, armed robbery and murder.

“One of them has serious liver problem but we will bury him if need be because he knowingly doomed the future of young girl whom he raped repeatedly,” she said.

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