Lilongwe, 18th June, 2020
PRESIDENT MUTHARIKA, DR. JANE ANSAH TO BLAME FOR MEC’S ILL-PREPAREDNESS
The Centre for Democracy and Economic Development Initiatives (CDEDI) has been following developments surrounding the state of preparations for the forth coming Fresh Presidential Elections (FPE) set for June 23, 2020.
CDEDI would like to congratulate the current cohort of Commissioners for the Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC), led by Judge Dr. Chifundo Kachali for hitting the ground running as clearly demonstrated by their working around the clock! This is a classic example of patriotism.
It is also re-assuring to note that Members of Parliament (MPs) did their part by ensuring that a date is fixed for the fresh polls.
CDEDI is aware of the alleged futile attempts by the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) to frustrate the process in the August House.
CDEDI would like to remind all Malawians that the Constitutional Court nullified the May 21, 2019 Presidential polls that declared the incumbent Professor Peter Mutharika as a winner on 3rd February, 2020. Five months have almost elapsed since the ruling was made.
Malawians of goodwill may also wish to recall that MEC, under the leadership of Dr. Jane Ansah opted for a fight to overturn the court ruling together with President Mutharika as if they were in an electoral alliance, at a time when the MEC was supposed to start preparations for the FPE.
On the other hand, the National Assembly did as the court ordered by debating the electoral laws to enable the effective implementation of 50+1 system of determining the winner and set May 19, 2020 as the date for the fresh polls. President Mutharika, however, tried so hard to frustrate the process further by sitting on the bills for over a month only to reject assenting to the bills at the eleventh hour, to the huge surprise of Malawians.
All these delaying tactics were being played even after the courts had on more than two occasions advised the MEC to proceed with the preparations for the polls. In view of the above, CDEDI believes President Mutharika and Justice Ansah should be held responsible for any challenge that may arise due to the state of preparedness the electoral body has found itself in.
In addition, Malawians should hold President Mutharika and Dr. Ansah personally responsible for all the shortcomings and bottlenecks that may hamper the smooth running of the FPE. Much as it was their constitutional right to appeal against the court ruling, CDEDI believes President Mutharika and the former MEC Chairperson abused their rights and powers due to some selfish interests, at the expense of national interests.
CDEDI has also noted with regret that some unscrupulous individuals are conniving with morally bankrupt and unpatriotic politicians to ensure that they should discredit the forthcoming polls and at the same time render the country ungovernable.
We would like to condemn such selfish motives by reminding them all to think of the future of their own children as well as the welfare of their close family members before embarking on such evil schemes. CDEDI is of the view that this is the best time for all of us to join hands and volunteer our services towards the smooth running of the FPE which is finally here!
CDEDI would like to reiterate that no one is bigger than Malawi, therefore we will not sit back and watch greedy and failed politicians destroying the country.
Finally, we at CDEDI, are challenging some good people from DPP stand up and be counted by openly denounce what is happening with its government!
CDEDI is a non partisan, nongovernmental organization that was established in a quest to attain a well-informed and organized citizenry that can ably demand their social and economic rights at the same time hold duty bearers accountable for their actions.
Among many others CDEDI aims at sensitizing the masses on matters of national importance, inculcate the spirit of a peaceful coexistence among people of different ethnic, political and religious affiliations; provide civic education on people’s rights and responsibilities in economic independence and contribution towards national development and lobbying for the electoral law reforms.
ACTING EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR