Hitting the nail: It’s DPP, after all
Malawians should not be surprised that the DPP administration has greatly defaced the Access to Information Bill that is to be tabled in Parliament because it is in within the DNA of the party to be anti-freedom in general and anti-media in particular.
Namisa, Media Council of Malawi (MCM) and Centre for Human Rights and Rehabilitation (CHRR) have done an extensive analysis of the butchering that the DPP government has done to the ATI but for me what comes out is the fact that the DPP administration does not want to give us access to past information in its custody but only that which will become available the moment President Peter Mutharika signs it into law.
To me, without this proposed law applying retrospectively, we do not need it.
When a whole president speaks and threatens to use veto powers against a bill that is yet to see light of day in Parliament, then you have a problem. This is exactly what Mutharika did and it is clear that he has influenced this ATI to suit his personal disposition.
The question that Malawians must answer is: What is their President afraid of and what is it that he wants to protect in the years gone by especially coming at a time when theft of public money called Cashgate, both during the DPP and PP governments, was so rampant.
The professor is a huge disappointment as far as his leadership is concerned. Many Malawians who voted for DPP thought this time with Peter Mutharika at the helm, things would be different.
We knew all along that DPP is a party that is against civil liberties. That is why after 2009 when Malawians gave it a landslide victory, it had the cheek of enacting one bad law after another. It even had the audacity of giving powers to a minister of Information to ban a publication if he or she deemed it fit in the interest of the public.
The DPP had the temerity of even enacting a law that stopped the High Court from giving an injunction to an individual unless government was heard.
Things were so bad that by July 2011, everybody who loved freedom was up in arms, protesting dictatorship that had become so pervasive. What did DPP do?
It unleashed police on its citizens and gunned down 20 of them in cold blood, all because they were demanding to have their rights back.
It was foolhardy for anybody in their wildest dreams that such a party could be progressive enough to empower citizens to ask government to account and be transparent in its dealings.
It is DPP, after all. It runs in its blood to be anti-freedom. And it does not matter which Mutharika is at State House. They are the same and fashioned from the same template.
There is only one reason why Peter Mutharika does not want to give us this law. He does not want us to see what happened in government in the past and wants to make it impossible for us to see what his government is currently doing. His method is to give us a bad law that is not even a resemblance of what we want as if we were children.
But Parliament will do the needful and it is to reject this sham and façade of a proposed law that the DPP has shamefully hijacked to achieve its own selfish motives and hide what is in its cupboard.
After that the concerned citizens will regroup and strategise to get a law that Malawians want and not what Peter Mutharika and his DPP desire.
I always say this and I will say again. This country belongs to all of us. It is not a personal estate or a cabal of few elites who want to fashion it in their own image to suit their own over inflated egos.
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