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stories and histories HISTORY OF MALAWI POLICE BY VIC SIBALE

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Adeyemi Olajide » HISTORY OF MALAWI POLICE By Vic Sibale

As Police officers are celebrating their history we look at their brief history.

From Nyasaland to Malawi Police

The first Consul in Nyasaland Captain Foot organised a few natives like Consular Police in March - October, 1883 in Blantyre who helped and protected him as he met Chiefs in Shire Highlands.

In 1889, John Buchanan who was a Consul then put more emphasis of preparing a little army for the territory rather than a Police and his successor Harry Johnstone succeeded in raising the army on the official declaration of the Nyasaland as a Protectorate in 1891.

In the 1890s, in Nyasaland, District Commissioners used Messengers to collect tax and these performed duties of the police.

The untrained Messengers enforced the law in the villages but were very undisciplined and unruly.

They tended to demand food, chickens even women.

The govt reacted to this through the 1909 Ordinance that stipulated harsh punishment to unruly Policemen.

Blantyre became a full township in 1896.

The first actual trained policemen were 2 and were employed in 1899 in Blantyre. Blantyre employed those 2 policemen who patrolled through markets of Blantyre township...and also checking on labourers working in the township.

The 1915 Uprising in Nyasaland precipitated serious plans by the govt to form a proper Nyasaland Police

In 1920- 21 Elements of a Police Dept started to appear with Major Francis Stephens appointed Commissioner of Police.

In October 1921 Nyasaland Police Ordinance was signed by Governor Sir George Smith.

This marked the official opening of the Nyasaland Police Dept though some literature say Nyasaland Police was officially opened in 1923.

The headquarters was at Zomba with a Chief Commissioner and support staff and 3 branches Blantyre, Fort Lister and Fort Johnstone.

The Nyasaland Police Force had a total of 100 policemen with a fleet of 4 bicycles.

Their main duties were recovery of WWI rifles from ex soldiers, registration of bicycles, vehicles and fire arms.... supervision of prisons and criminal investigation.

In 1922 Criminal Investigation Dept was formed and in 1930s Immigration Dept was added to the Force.

Mid 30s the ranks of Assistant Inspector and Sub Inspector were created and were mostly occupied by Indians later by natives.

By 1940 the Political Intelligence Bureau was added to the Force and toward the end of WWII the Radio Comms was added to the Nyasaland Police as a Dept.

By 1952 the Police Force had stations in all the districts and the total number of the force was 705.

Due to the 1953 revolts in Nyasaland, the Police recruited more and built most of those old Police houses which can be seen up to now.

Thus the Police Mobile Force was created with a total of 250 ex KAR soldiers divided into platoons of 36.

A Police Training School was created and in 1959 the Marine Services with 2 boats came into existence.

In 1960 the Political Intelligence Bureau became the Special Branch.

The highest ranked native in the Force by 1958 was Mateyu Numero who was a Assistant Superintendent who was in charge of the Police Band after he attended a course at the British Royal Military School of Music.

In 1959, Thomas Gombera became the first native to rise from operations division to the rank of Inspector.

In 1971 Mac Kamwana formerly head of Police Training School became the Commissioner of the Nyasaland Police then changed to Inspector General in 1983.

He retired in the mid 80s and was succeeded by his deputy L Ngwata serving only for 8 months and replaced by Elliot Mbedza of the PMF.

A year later, in 1988... he retired was replaced by Milward Namasani of the CID.

In 1990 Mac William Lunguzi, head of Special Branch took over til 1994 when he was replaced during the advent of Multipartiyism.

The UDF govt recalled the retired former Assistant Commissioner Chikhosa to lead the police.

He was succeeded by Kennedy Chirambo in 1997 who retired in January 2000 on health grounds.

He was succeeded by Joseph Iron who served till 2004.

He was succeeded by Mary Nangwale the first woman Inspector General of Police, who facilitated the introduction of rapid response 997

She was succeeded by Mr Oliver Kumbambe who was the first most educated Inspector General Malawi Police.

He was succeeded by Peter Mukhitho who improved the welfare of Police officers.

He was succeeded by Loti Dzonzi who served till 2014.

He was succeeded by Paul Kanyama who was appointed by the new president Proffessor Arthur Peter Mutharika.

He was succeeded by Dr Lexten Kachama(PhD).

He was succeeded by Rodney Jose.

He was succeeded by Duncan Mwapasa who served in acting capacity.

He was succeeded by Dr George Kainja(current Inspector General) who was appointed by the new and current president Dr Lazarus Chakwera.
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Author: adex3g 6 months
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