Public warn each other on rise of incidents of night ambushes by thugs on motorists at their homes’ entrance gates

Closed gate and as one gets out of car to open, thugs attack

* Advise each other to be on high alert when approaching their gates — even for those with those that open electronically

* As public mourns death of one very pleasant and amiable personality in Blantyre — and if not the whole country — Anthony Phanga

* Who is reported to have succumbed to head injuries after been attacked by thugs at his gate

By Duncan Mlanjira

As incidents of ambush attacks by thugs on motorists at their homes’ entrance gates at night are on the increase, the public — through social media — are warning each other to be on high alert as they approach their gates.


The advice is also for those home owners, whose entrance gates open electronically using the remote control, following an ambush on a prominent senior senior citizen (name withheld), who was attacked at the gate of his house at Naperi on Monday evening.

According to a report trending on social media, this senior citizen’s remote of his electronic gate was not working and he is reported to have got out of his car to open the gate for himself, whereupon the robbers jumped on him.

Fortunately, according to social media, he was not hurt as they just robbed him of some of his possession on him and those in the car such as phone and money.

“Approaching your own gate in the evening has become a very dangerous undertaking,” said the initial announcement of the attack.

Anthony Phanga, mourned by many

This comes on the heels of the death of one very pleasant and amiable personality in Blantyre — and if not the whole country — Anthony Phanga, who, according to Malawi Institute of Journalism (MIJ), succumbed to head injuries after been attacked by thugs on Saturday, July 9 at his gate as he was entering his premises.

An avalanche of condolences flooded Facebook upon the news, expressing the horror to one citizen who was so humble, good-natured and affable person.

A news report by Malawi News Agency (MANA) said Phanga, who was MIJ’s Executive Director, had been battling with head injuries after a week of his night attack, as according to the deceased’s family member, Esther Phanga.

MANA reports that MIJ’s Broadcasting Service Manager, Roselyn Makhambera was full of shock with the death of Phanga, whom he said was so dedicated to his work.


Makhambera told MANA that Phanga’s absence from MIJ will create a big gap as the directions he was giving in running the institution was invaluable.

“We have been seeking guidance from him whenever we are stuck, but now, his death will create a big gap to our institution,” Makhambera is quoted as saying.

In reaction, Kambani Bolokonya agreed, saying: “Anthony was a man full of life — so jovial. This is not only sad but shocking.”

Such disbelief and total distress was shared all over Facebook and other social media platform, reminiscing how amiable Phanga was right from secondary school, where many met him; in the University of Malawi corridors and working for Times Group — then known as Blantyre Printing & Publishing Company before landing at MIJ.


In his comment on Facebook, Jahni Muswati Chirambo said: “With the rate at which people are being hacked, I feel we need to start considering gun laws. We are no longer safe — how does one protect himself from [such] attacks? My condolences to the Phanga family”

Several other commentators were of the view that there is need for tough actions on these types of crimes in this country while Donald Mphande said, as he kept thinking of the death of Phanga and its circumstances, he hoped the police would intensify their patrols in residential areas.

“I do hope our police would do the needful and catch the responsible people,” he said. “When one drives around in our cities, you see lots of traffic policemen on the road. You wonder, why the same effort is not made for ensuring there is adequate security for ordinary citizens.”

According to MANA, Phanga is expected to be laid to rest on  Wednesday, July 20, at his home in Salima.—Additional reporting by Andsen Banda, MANA