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Saulos Chilima hits at Peter Mutharika, DPP


Mgeme Kalilani

Vice-President Saulos Chilima has threatened to report President Peter Mutharika and his governing Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) to the International Criminal Court if violence against opposition political parties persists.

In a hard-hitting address that he delivered in Lilongwe Monday, Chilima—who is also UTM leader—accused Mutharika of unleashing terror on Malawians ahead of the courted-ordered fresh presidential election.

But Presidential Press Secretary, Mgeme Kalilani, has dismissed as baseless the vice-president’s claims and threats.

In his address, Chilima described Mutharika and those he called his henchmen who intend to remain in power by all means necessary as enemies of the people of Malawi.

He further charged that Mutharika and DPP have failed to cling to power in many ways, including an attempt to bribe the judges who handled the presidential election petition case which eventually favoured Chilima and his UTM counterpart Lazarus Chakwera as the petitioners.

“Having failed in all those attempts to sabotage change and knowing that there is no way this election will be abandoned…, Mutharika and the DPP have now unleashed a new wave of violence and tribal rhetoric aimed at dividing Malawians and scaring those that dare challenge his evil plan of turning this country to an estate co-owned by two families,” Chilima charged.

He further accused his boss of having no intention of preaching non-tribalism or national unity, saying the agenda of Mutharika and DPP is that of “tribal hegemony whose ideology is rooted in violence and intimidation”.

Chilima also took a swipe at Malawians who choose to take a passive stand on matters of national importance, accusing them of promoting bad conducts.

“Compatriots, there are some among us, who like to stand by and watch things unfold. I do not think that this is a helpful approach to weighty matters of state governance. By not contributing and rendering your hand to this fight, you are inadvertently complicit in the perpetration of injustice against powerless and defenceless Malawians,” he said.

But Kalilani responded to Chilima’s claims and accusations by saying the vice-president likes making such serious allegations without any basis.

“He does so just to seek relevance and presence on the political scene. His allegations are baseless. Next time ask him to provide proof,” Kalilani said.

Meanwhile, National Police spokesperson James Kadadzera said they have received reports of attacks directed at some party monitors in Malawi Electoral Commission registration centres such as Thawale and Supuni in Mulanje.

“The victims were referred to the hospital and then police statements were recorded and case files opened. Officers are on the ground tracing the suspects. We are certain that they will be found, arrested and prosecuted,” Kadadzera said.

Some political analysts have since warned that acts of political violence that have been registered so far could escalate ahead of the July 2 election.

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