Government calls for peace, calm
The government has asked the general public to desist from any form of violence and assured them of peace as the countdown to the judgement of the presidential election results case comes to an end.
Minister of Information, Civic Education and Communications Technology, Mark Botomani, said this in a statement released Tuesday after the judiciary announced that the ruling on the court case will be delivered on Monday in Lilongwe.
“As the country awaits the presidential election case ruling in the Constitutional Court, the government would like to assure the public that there is going to be peace and calm, law and order before, during and after the judgment,” the statement reads.
Botomani has said the government realises that the ruling will attract different reactions; hence assured that the country’s security organs are prepared to keep peace and safeguard people’s lives and property.
“Sobriety and patriotism are key ingredients to peace during this period. We only have one Malawi and destruction of the country is counterproductive. [The] government calls on the public to desist from posting fake news on social media which creates tension about the impending ruling. Malawi is a peaceful and God-fearing country which does not condone violence. Let us remain united and be agents of peace,” he said.
Malawi Congress Party (MCP) spokesperson, Maurice Munthali, said what the government is saying is what their party has been preaching since hearing of the case ended last month.
“We have always preached peace, we want to preach peace now and we want to preach peace even after the ruling is delivered. After the verdict, there are all peaceful means to pursue if not satisfied, like appealing if need arises,” Munthali said.
UTM spokesperson, Joseph Chidanti Malunga echoed Munthali’s sentiments that choosing the legal route was in itself a message that the party opts for peaceful mechanisms of presenting its grievances.
“UTM believes in the rule of law and that is why we went to court. We should be able to adhere to the ruling,” he said.
In August last year, the constitutional court comprising judges Mike Tembo, Redson Kapindu, Dingiswayo Madise, Ivy Kamanga and Healey Potani started hearing the elections case following a challenge by MCP and UTM who allege massive irregularities.
In a related development, Central Region Police yesterday met members of the community in Nsundwe, Chileka, Namitete in Lilongwe District to resolve differences that started between the police and the people of the areas after the election results were announced.
The hatred between the two sides worsened when an angry mob stoned to death Mobile Police Service officer Usumani Imedi in Msundwe and in retaliation; some police officers assaulted and defiled women and girls of Mbwatalika, Msundwe and surrounding areas.
Central Region Assistant Commissioner of Police, Evalista Chisale, called on the two sides to resolve their differences to end crime which has become rampant in the areas due to unavailability of a police unit.
“Let us forget about the past and forge forward together. When you have issues, don’t rush to vandalise or torch your police unit. When you do this, you are destroying your own Malawi. Unfortunately, we will not have another nation other than this one,” Chisale said.
She admitted that there are some few police officers who behave unprofessionally thereby denting Malawi Police Service image.
Lilongwe District Conflict Resolution Chairperson, Alex Chapondera, called the members of the community to remain calm and peaceful after the court ruling.
“When the outcome of the election court case is out, let us make sure that we don’t infringe on other people’s rights because there are always two sides when it comes to court issues, either you are on the winning side or losing side,” Chapondera said.