‘The cold blood murder of a police officer by MCP thugs in Lilongwe on Tuesday has ignited painful memories among Yaos in Mangochi of the terror MCP government unleashed on innocent people there.
Now they are asking: “Why does MCP hate us forever? What wrong did we do?”
This was one of the many questions raised by mourners at the funeral of the police officer, Imedi Usumani, on Wednesday at his village in Traditional Authority Makanjira.
Usumani died a painful death. He had led a team of officers to Nsundwe to stop the violence by youths who were terrorizing traffic along the Mchinji-Lilongwe road. The MCP youths stoned him to death.
At the funeral ceremony, Makanjira and other mourners expressed shock and bitterness with the murder of one of their own.
“He went to restore peace and order. They killed him like he was a common criminal. The past has come back to haunt,” said one of the Muslim clerics at the funeral.
This was in reference to MCP brutality against the Yaos in the district.
Yaos in Mangochi are among those that suffered the worst forms of MCP brutality, their crime being that they were kith and kin of Henry Masauko Chipembere.
Chipembere, a militant, charismatic and intelligent cabinet minister, was among the nationalists who opposed the autocratic tendencies of Kamuzu Banda’s leadership in 1964 and he resigned from cabient in protest.
From his base in Mangochi, he attempted a revolt which MCP brutally crushed and hunted him to exile.
Unable to get him, MCP turned on his Moto village in Traditional Authority Makanjira where it torched all houses in the village, beating up women and children and detaining and killing men.
Some the people that were arrested never came back alive from detention while others returned home crippled due to brutal beating by police, Young Pioneers and MCP youth league.
MCP unleashed this terror not only on Moto village but also other parts of Mangochi such as Lulanga, Mgosa, Chimbiri, Mtamba, Malindi,
Ntenjeza, Makumba, Lungweni, Masyasya and Makanjira headquarters in Mpilipiri.
Up to the time it was voted out of power in 1994, MCP never appointed any Yao person from Mangochi to any high position in the party and in government.