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Don’t entertain law breakers

When one goes through the answers that Finance Minister Goodall Gondwe gave in Parliament on Tuesday when he was queried on the postponement of four by-elections in Dedza and Lilongwe, one realises that we are being governed by a bunch of crooked people who think they are above the law and that they have a God-given right to break it randomly to fulfill their short-term political agenda.

The announcement that MEC chairperson made to the country that her commission has postponed the by-elections has only one meaning and it is that the body in league with the DPP-led government, has decided to defraud the people of Lilongwe City South East and Lilongwe Msozi North constituencies of their democratic right to have political representation in the National Assembly.

I expected Goodall Gondwe to talk sense on Tuesday but alas! He merely repeated the line that they have agreed on with MEC and it is to say they have no money and that the elections will be held only after the next financial year, which only starts on July 1 after the national budget is passed during the current sitting of Parliament.

Gondwe confirmed what Lilongwe North East MP Maxwell Thyolera reminded him that Parliament passed a K1 billion vote for MEC to use to conduct by-elections.

The minister also confirmed that MEC only used K500 million but seemed to justify the fact that MEC used the other K500 million on something else and not by-elections.

The net effect of all the above is that Gondwe is justifying and condoning the fact that MEC used money meant for by-elections on other things and not what it was budgeted for in Parliament.

Strangely, the minister does not say what MEC spent this money on.

Again, this is change of own Secretary to Treasury Ben Botolo told the nation that the money budgeted for by-elections was used to fight Ntchembere zandonda in Salima.

All this senselessness, inconsistencies, arrogance and total disregard of what is right mean only one thing and it is that we are governed by a group of fraudsters who can come together to scheme against Malawians.

The by-elections for Lilongwe City South East and Lilongwe Msozi North constituencies as well as Mayani North Ward in Dedza and Mtsiliza Ward in Lilongwe were gazetted on April 7 2017.

The law says by-elections must be held 60 days after a vacancy is declared. It does not say it depends on MEC spending or not spending by-elections money on something else.

I, therefore, repeat that what Malawians are seeing here is broad daylight fraud and theft of the rights of people of Lilongwe City North East, Lilongwe Msozi North, Mayani North Ward and Mtsiliza Ward to have no representation.

As I keep on saying reality is that MEC is doing the bidding of the DPP government which does not want the polls to be conducted as it knows its image is battered beyond repair due to corruption, selective justice, nepotism, mismanagement and general incompetence the list is endless that they cannot win the elections in Lilongwe and Dedza.

Why would the people of Lilongwe City South East, for example, in their wildest imagination, vote for a government that allowed their ballot papers from their constituency to be burnt because it did not want them to be recounted for fear of being discovered after its rigging of the poll?

This can only happen if they have gone bonkers or there is another round of rigging that the DPP would engineer.

This is what DPP is afraid of. It is not about money at all.

This is why Malawians who wish their country well must fear for this MEC we have.

It’s a catastrophic disaster waiting to happen and I fear for 2019. We have a MEC that is parroting the line of the DPP all the time instead of fighting it to do the right thing for Malawians in accordance with the relevant laws.

Simply put, what MEC and the government are doing is wrong and they must not be allowed to get away with it.

As citizens we have a right to rise up and stop this nonsense being perpetrated against our hard won democracy by a cabal of scheming individuals.

Parliament has started it. But where are the people of Lilongwe City North East, Lilongwe Msozi North, Mayani North Ward and Mtsiliza Ward? Where is the civil society on human rights and good governance?

These fraudsters must not get away with it. As Malawians, we must not tolerate and entertain this wanton breaking of the law by MEC and the DPP government.

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