APM handout causes uproar at Blantyre market


Women vendors and a handful of men who ply their trade at Blantyre Market on Monday held demonstrations aimed at forcing their chairperson to equitably share the money President Peter Mutharika presented to them last week Thursday.

The vendors said they did not get their share of the spoils despite being promised by Mutharika.

The chairman in question, identified as Binya allegedly said the money was with the Zingwagwa market chairperson which infuriated the women.

Tabita Moses an irish potato seller and Enifa Mifa whose business is in tomatoes said the demonstrations started at around lunch time after their meeting with Blantyre City Council Chief Executive to hear their case fell off.

Demonstrator's burn tires

Moses explained that the CEO just left and did not hear them out so they decided to cause the uproar to attract attention.

“How come someone from Zingwangwa comes here to pick money that was meant for us. We ply our trade here in the market,” Moses said.

Mutharika gave the money to the vendors on Thursday as he was passing by from his development project tours.

However, it is unclear how much money he gave the people because the figures were not disclosed publicly and there are contradicting ranges.

Some vendors say K60 million which is exorbitant while Moses and friends say they heard of K10 million.

The aggressive crowd turned back cars only allowing those from institutions like hospitals while minibuses and other cars were being blocked with stones and pelted with tree branches and shrubs.

Sit down on the road
Sit down on the road at Mibawa

Moses bemoaned the character and behavior of some people who make the President look bad.

“Everyone has problems at home so it is disheartening to see one person just accumulating while we suffer. The President is not a bad person but the people he entrusts are up to no good and they make him look bad,” she said.

Speaking on the way forward if the money is not shared accordingly,  the women vowed to sleep on the streets to get their share.