Five Jehovah’s Witnesses arrested in Malawi for refusing give blood to terminally ill child

Five people who under the guise of religious belief refused to donate blood to an anaemic family member are under police custody in Mangochi after hospital officials sought for their intervention in order to save the life of a seven-year old child.

Failure to provide a child with necessities contravenes Section 242 of the Malawi Penal Code, and the police have said that the accused will appear before the court to answer to a charge of failing to provide necessities to a child under their care soon.

The five, who all belong to Jehova’s Witness faith include his father Simon Kamwendo. The others are grandfather Bernard Kamwendo, brothers Solomon and Divason Mwabwino,and an uncle Byson , from Mapata Village in Traditional Authority Mponda in the district.

Mangochi Police Station Public Relations Officer Rodrick Maida confirmed the arrest, saying they acted after Medical Doctors at Koche Health Centre in Maldeco reported the case to Makolola Police Unit.

“We arrested the five following a report from Koche Clinic which asked for our intervention in the matter whereby these people were refusing to donate blood to a patient who needed to be saved from dying,” Mangochi PRO said.

It is said that the child was diagnosed of Malaria and that he was anaemic hence the need to have blood transfusion and the resistance by his relations forced the hospital officials to seek the intervention of the law enforcers

During the one party rule the Jehova Witness believers were forced to go into exile because of their questionable beliefs that included denial to pay for the mandatory party card that the then ruling Malawi Congress Party agents, the youth enforced. 

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