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Civil Society Organisations sue Democratic Progressive Party

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Following the collapse of dialogue between the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) and civil society organisations (CSOs), the latter have finally filed a case against the former on allegations that it collected money from public institutions towards a fundraising event.

The summons, which we have seen, has been filed by lawyer Wesley Mwafulirwa in the High Court of Malawi at the Zomba Registry as miscellaneous case number 41 of 2017.

The CSOs have listed the DPP, Blantyre, Mzuzu and Lilongwe city councils and Li longwe Water Board as respondents in that order.

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The applicants are Gift Trapence of Centre for the Development of People, Charles Kajoloweka of Youth and Society, Robert Mkwezalamba of Human Rights Consultative Committee, Timothy Mtambo of Centre for Human Rights and Rehabilitation and Moses Mkandawire of Church and Society in the Livingstonia Synod of the CCAP, also in that order.

The CSOs seek an order compelling the DPP to refund the K13.5 million it collected as well as restraining it from ever sourcing and accepting donations originating from taxes.

“…the applicants claim a prohibitory order restraining the third respondent [Mzuzu City Council] from executing a donation of about K3.5 million pledged towards the Blue Night,” the summons read in part.

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The CSOs have also asked the court for a mandatory order to force the DPP to furnish them with all names of public agencies that donated towards the Blue Night fundraising dinner held in Lilongwe in July.

DPP’s vice-president for the Central Region, Hetherwick Ntaba, refused to comment.

“I will not comment on something that I have not seen. We expected dialogue and we have not heard from them since,” Ntaba said.

Last week, the CSOs pulled out of the dialogue citing lack of seriousness on the part of the DPP.

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