Government officials and relatives have confirmed that Kanyama died this morning at Deyang hospital in Lilongwe.
President Peter Mutharika appointed Kanyama as new inspector general of the Malawi Police in 2014.
His appointment was never without controversy.
The former top cop resigned later on pulling on a heated debate in Parliament that was considering whether to confirm or reject his appointment as the head of the Malawi Police Service (MPS).
His three-month stint as the MPS head was the shortest for a serving police Inspector General in the country.
The day’s drama started with Home Affairs and Internal Security Minister Paul Chibingu proposing that Parliament confirms Kanyama as the Police Inspector General.
Presenting Kanyama’s educational and professional profile, Chibingu said the candidate deserved the top post after serving the MPS faithfully for 37 years and, latterly, as the Deputy Inspector General.
Chibingu said Kanyama had not only risen through the ranks for many years but also had won several local and international awards.
The first sign that the government could have problems ‘selling’ the Kanyama agenda came when a black-out suddenly engulfed the House. Many opposition members teasingly shouted: “Kanyama!…Kanyama!” as the government side retorted, after the power came back: “Boma ilo… Boma ilo” hinting that the government has answers to problems.
But in response to the Kanyama proposal, the Malawi Congress Party (MCP) Member of Parliament for Lilongwe North East Maxwell Thyolera said although the government side tried to sugar-coat Kanyama’s curriculum vitae, they found him under-qualified.
The parliamentarian accused Kanyama as having uttered pro-government partisan remarks soon after he was appointed by Mutharika recently, adding that technically, “the man is supposed to retire in a year’s time, as he has already received part of his gratuity.”
Other speakers who spoke against Kanyama’s confirmation were MCP’s Salima North West Member of Parliament Jessie Kabwila, who described Kanyama as divisive and not well educated.
“Take him to school, let him learn,” she added.
But there were also many pro-Kanyama speakers, who argued that the candidate’s practical experience qualified him for the job.
The most passionate of the speakers was Leader of the House and Transport and Public Works Minister Francis Kasaila who charged that claims for a more educated Inspector General were out of place.
Said Kasaila: “We need to hold hands…and let us leave politics aside. Mr. Paul Kanyama should be given the benefit of the doubt (as the confirmed Inspector General).”
Just when the debate was curtailed and voting was about to take place, MCP chief whip Lobin Lowe made a shocking announcement that Kanyama had just held a news conference and announced his resignation.
[Copied story body details from nation publication]
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