Members of Parliament continue to face wrathof voters over electoral bills


The world continues to crumble on some Members of Parliament (MPs) in the country who blocked the proposed 50%+1 system of electing a president in one of the Electoral Reforms
(Amendment) bills during the just ended sitting of Parliament.
All the MPs in the Northern Region that voted against the bills, effectively stopping their progression in the House, have been branded as traitors by their subjects and accused of siding with the ruling Democratic Progressive Party.
Last week, Independent MP for Mzimba North East Constituency, Olipa Muyaba, was forced to apologise for helping the DPP in Parliament to block the Presidential, Parliamentary and Local Government Elections bill effectively stopping the proposed 50+1 to elect a President, MPand a Councilor.
Muyaba became the first MP to apologise for her decision on the bills.
Similarly in Chitipa South Constituency, legislator Welani Chilenga has come under fire from traditional, community and People’s Party- PP leaders for voting against the proposed bills and also entering into a working relationship with the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) without their blessings. Chitipa South Constituency voters have during the week been holding meetings, discussing Chilenga’s fate.
One of the participants, Zebron Kaonga, said in a telephone interview that Chilenga is a disappointment to the electorate and that they want to bring him back into line.
“He is playing with people’s minds and feelings. Not long ago, he convinced people to join the PP, and today he has suddenly and silently defected to the DPP. It only shows lack of seriousness and taking people for granted,” said Fletcher Simwaka, PP’s constituency governor.
Chilenga, who won on PP ticket, was during Peter Mutharika’s rally in Chitipa two months ago unveiled to the DPP supporters and was among the MPs who joined the government side in voting against the debating of the 50%+1 electoral reform.
But speaking in an interview yesterday, Chilenga said the PP lacks leadership and that there is a lot of chaos going on in the party.
Asked on why he rejected the bill, the lawmaker said he does not understand its contents and
so too his people.
“Yes I did not consult them because I do not understand the bill fully hence my decision to reject it. It is surprising to me to have them turn against me. The problem with us Malawians we are always in a hurry. These bills will come back and necessary procedures will be followed if we are to have them into law,” he said.
In Mzimba South East Constituency the story is the same. The voters are also calling for the head of their MP Chihahula Shaba, an independent MP, saying his action in Parliament cannot go without consequences.
Troubles for Karonga South Constituency Malani Mtonga continue. This week he was chased away from a meeting after he failed to explain why he voted against the Presidential, Parliamentary and Local Government elections bill.
Mtonga who told Malawi News last week that he only exercised his democratic right by voting against the will of his people has since been banned by his constituents from conducting any meeting in the area until he issues an apology.
A member of the constituency committee Chengamowa Munthali said yesterday thatpeople in the area are not happy with Mtonga and that they are further appalled by his arrogance.
“His conduct is horrifying, people are too annoyed and they do not want him anywhere closer to them. The party structures demanded explanation and an apology over the manner in which he voted,” Munthali said.
District governor for PP in Karonga Medson Simwaka said his committee is forging ahead and is grooming candidates that would respect the will of the people and remain accountable to them.
When contacted, Mtonga avoided our calls and text messages.
The PP, through its deputy spokesman, Ackson Kalaile Banda, has said plans are in place for disciplinary action against all the party’s legislators who shot down the second reading of the bill, saying it was against the party’s stance on the matter.
The revolt against MPs is not only happening in the northern region. A fortnight ago Malawi
News went around the central region and Eastern region and the story was the same.
Malawi News travelled to some constituencies in the central region and visited Uladi Mussa’s Salima South; asked questions in Wallace Chawawa’s Zomba Chingale Constituency and Patrick Makina’s Zomba Ntonya Constituency

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