LILONGWE—Not knowing what to expect is having a negative impact on the wife of presidential aspirant Atupele Muluzi who was arrested this week is yet to be charged.
Sitting by his hospital bed, wife Angella pours her heart out.
"It’s the suspense of not knowing what will happen,” she says. “It’s painful.”
Equally frustrated is defense attorney Jai Banda.
He tells MaraPost that he has been given the runaround trying but failing to have his client released on bail.
A day after he was admitted to hospital for high blood pressure, Muluzi told MaraPost he was being treated for malaria.
Any more time spent in police custody is a violation of the law, according to lawyer Banda who argues that after 48 hours, police must bring charges against Muluzi.
Muluzi was arrested on Tuesday after his supporters set on fire a police station on Sunday. His arrest is linked to a violent weekend rally in the capital Lilongwe which police say he had no permission to hold. Police have said Muluzi will be charged with inciting violence.
Muluzi was expected to address the crowd when police fired teargas to disperse the gathering, resulting in violent running battles with police. A police station was burnt down, several remand prisoners escaped and gun was stolen, according to police.
The 34-year-old politician who is planning to contest the 2014 presidential election has accused police of "provoking the situation" by firing teargas at his supporters.
His rallies have drawn large crowds since he announced his plan to unseat Pres Bungu wa Mutharika whose second term in office has been rocky as critics have accused him of trampling on democratic freedoms and mismanaging the economy.
Political tensions erupted into rioting July last year which left 19 people dead after they were shot by police.
The country’s oldest rights group, the Public Affairs Committee (PAC) – made up of Catholics, Protestants and Muslims - last week asked Mutharika to resign within 60 days or call for a referendum in three months time, failing which he will face "civil disobedience."
Responding for the first time to the PAC challenge, Mutharika on Thursday said he will not resign.
Outside the clinic where Atupele is being attended to, supporters echoed the PAC resolution, saying Mutharika must go.
Inside the clinic, Angella, Atupele’s wife, had one thing to say: “We’ve left everything in the hands of God.”
----©2012 The Maravi Post. Reproduction authorised, with usual acknowledgment