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National

All set for second debate

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By Peter Kanjere:

The second phase of presidential debates is scheduled for this evening at Bingu International Convention Centre in Lilongwe, where four candidates will slug it out.

Times Television will beam the proceedings live.

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Tereza Ndanga, the debate’s taskforce chairperson, Monday said the proceedings will involve Cassim Chilumpha of Tikonze People’s Movement, independent candidate Reverend Kaliya, John Chisi (Umodzi Party) and Peter Kuwani (Mbakuwaku Movement for Development).

Ndanga said they will maintain Grace Malera who was the moderator of the first debate which attracted Malawi Congress Party’s Lazarus Chakwera, Atupele Muluzi of United Democratic Front and UTM’s Saulos Chilima at the same venue on Friday.

“We will maintain the moderator who was engaged for the first and second debate. We have noted the feedback on the moderator and I urge for patience. She understands what is expected and has taken the feedback positively,” Ndanga said.

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The third and final phase of the debates is scheduled for Friday at the same venue where all the eight presidential candidates are expected to avail themselves.

However, governing Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) is yet to change its stance that President Peter Mutharika would shun the debate.

“No positive feedback yet from DPP,” said Ndanga who has been courting DPP to try and convince them to participate in the debates.

The taskforce comprises Misa- Malawi, Times Group, Malawi Broadcasting Corporation, Zodiak Broadcasting Station, Centre for Multiparty Democracy, Democracy Works Foundation, Civil Society Agriculture Network, Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace, Malawi Law Society, Public Affairs Committee, Voluntary Service Organisation, National Initiative for Civic Education Trust and National Democratic Institute.

In an earlier statement, the taskforce said “the candidates have been grouped to ensure quality as well as an opportunity for the candidates to have ample time to defend their policies and manifestos.”  

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