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Lilongwe marchers pour into streets

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By Faith Kamtambe:

SOLIDARITY — Chakwera (in glasses) joined the marchers

In Lilongwe, the demonstrators left Lilongwe Community Centre Ground around 9 O’clock in the morning and delivered the petition to President Peter Mutharika, through Lilongwe City Council Chief Executive Officer, Moza Zeleza at Capital Hill around 12:30 in the afternoon.

They started with a smaller group but the numbers swelled as they passed Mchesi Township via Kamuzu Central Hospital (KCH) all the way to Capital Hill.

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Malawi Congress Party (MCP) president Lazarus Chakwera joined the demonstrations at a junction to KCH and left at a roundabout near the same hospital.

In his brief address, Chakwera said the only way Malawians can end the suffering they are going through is to vote into power a government that will solve the problems.

He was accompanied by the party’s secretary general Eisenhower Mkaka.

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The demonstrators did not enter Capital Hill premises as Zeleza was waiting at the entrance to receive the petition on behalf of Mutharika.

Among the demands they are making in the new petition, Human Right Defenders Coalition Chairperson, Timothy Mtambo, stated that they want the K145 million which was deposited into Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) account by Pioneer Investments returned to Malawians.

“All the people who were mentioned in this issue must be arrested,” Mtambo said.

He also said a house which the DPP bought in Blantyre using K65 million take from the same amount to be its offices should be repossessed by the Blantyre City Council.

Other demands are that the 4.2 million litres which went missing from Escom should be recovered, independence of institutions such as the Anti- Corruption Bureau (ACB), Malawi Communications Regulatory Authority (Macra), Malawi Revenue Authority and the Malawi Police Service.

Mtambo also said the process of purchasing new Integrated Financial Management Information System (Ifmis) should start all over again as there are irregularities in the purchase of the system.

“The President also appointed two deputies to the Inspector General. We understand that the Police Service Commission was not involved. We want government to follow the right procedures,” he said.

Mtambo said if government is not going to address the concerns raised, HRDC will ask some Members of Parliament (MPs) to table a motion in Parliament to impeach Mutharika.

“We came here and we have come again. If you want these demonstrations to stop, you have to do what is right. When we were delivering our ten-point petition on April 27, we said if the demands were not met, the President should resign. Today we are saying we have not changed our position. If that is not going to happen. We are going to engage MPs so that they commence impeachment process in Parliament,” he said.

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