Malawi’s Information Minister, Gospel Kazako, says there seems to be a narrative by the media and certain officials in South Africa which seek to sow tensions between the two countries.
Kazako has denied claims by the Chair of Parliament’s Home Affairs Portfolio Committee, Bongani Bongo, that the Bushiris may have fled with the Malawi delegation which was on an official visit in South Africa.
The claims were made during a radio interview on Monday.
Parliament’s Home Affairs Committee has invited Minister Aaron Motsoaledi to appear before it on Tuesday in relation to how the Bushiris contravened their bail conditions and fled to Malawi.
Statement on the delay of His Excellency Dr Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera, President of the Republic of Malawis’ departure from the Republic of South Africa @MalawiGovt @GovernmentZA @nomsa_maseko @CyrilRamaphosa @PresidencyZA @LAZARUSCHAKWERA @EisenhowerMkaka pic.twitter.com/oqhRJ3uBlD
— Min.Foreign Affairs (@ForeignMalawi) November 16, 2020
The video below looks at what the SADC extradition treaty entails:
Speaking to the SABC, Kazako says relations with South Africa will remain in good stead and there is no diplomatic row brewing as reported.
“It is not a concern, we are very clean out of this. We have not been briefed on anything that has been happening with our citizen prophet Shepherd Bushiri. When it comes to our official desk we will deal with it. We have also seen most of your officials tweeting and posting things that Bushiri was in this plane, we managed to sneak him out of South Africa.”
“We think that this is some effort to create a narrative – a discourse. Let us also avoid this situation of portraying a picture as if there is very big row or rift between Malawi and South Africa. We shall always be friends,” explains Kazako.
The video below unpacks the Bushiri matter with SABC Foreign Editor Sophie Mokoena:
Meanwhile, the Pretoria Magistrate’s Court has issued a warrant of arrest and revoked fugitive pastor Shepherd Bushiri and his wife Mary’s R200 000 bail each on Monday.
Government earlier said they had established that the Bushiris did not leave the country through any of the ports out of South Africa.