Deputy Speaker Shoots Himself Dead.
Written by Derrick Asaba on October 4, 2021
Former Malawian Member of Parliament, Clement Chiwaya, shot himself dead in an office in parliament.
Chiwaya is reportedly to have entered the office of the clerk of parliament on Thursday this week and shot himself with the clerk watching.
“Honorable Chiwaya was involved in an accident while using his purchased vehicle. Unfortunately, the comprehensive insurance had expired at the time of the accident,” the parliament’s statement said.
Police spokesperson, James Kadadzera, confirmed Thursday’s incident but refused to give details until he had received a full report from investigators.
The statement from parliament appeared to suggest that Chiwaya had secretly brought a gun into the high-security building.
“Having been a person with a disability, the security scanner alerts were deemed to be from the wheelchair,” the statement said.
In his note, he said he was tired of begging for what belonged to him and said he took his own life for fear of “hurting others”.
In a note he left shortly before the shooting, he wrote about the dispute he had with parliamentary officials over the ownership of a specially adapted vehicle.
“Following the incident, parliament will enhance security measures for all categories of visitors to the Parliament building,” the statement further stated.
A source at parliament told the AFP news agency that Chiwaya shot himself in the head inside the office of the clerk of parliament, Fiona Kalembera.
Police are now investigating how he was able to enter parliament, which is usually under heavy security, with a loaded pistol. The speaker’s office said that security officials thought that it was his wheelchair that triggered the metal detectors.
After stepping down as deputy speaker he began a process to allow him to buy the car provided by parliament that enabled him to drive despite his disability.
BBC reported that Chiwaya paid for the vehicle but he accused parliament of failing to transfer ownership. In a statement released after the ex-MP’s death, the speaker’s office said that the matter was still in court.
Chiwaya was a wheelchair user after he contracted polio at the age of two and served as deputy speaker between 2014 and 2019, became a disability rights activist and successfully ran as an MP three times.