Blantyre vendors push for demo cancellation: ‘Malawi CSOs and govt should enter into dialogue’

As the clock ticks closer to January 13 anti-government demonstrations, members of Blantyre Vendors Association are calling upon the civil-society groups  to cancel the street protests and give dialogue a chance.

A faction of Blantyre vendors opposing the Jan 13 demos

A faction of Blantyre vendors opposing the Jan 13 demos

Civil society organizations have planned to hold the demonstration next week to force Beautify Malawi Trust (BEAM) and Muhlakho wa Alomwe (MWA) to return money they obtained from National Aids Commission (NAC).

NAC reportedly provided the funds to the BEAM and MWA which do not have any HIV/AIDS interventions programs to warrant such financial support.

But speaking to journalists in Blantyre, spokesperson of the concerned Blantyre vendors, Joy Mkweteza, who is also the executive Director for Centre for Development Association (CEDA) said vendors in Blantyre do not see convincing reasons to hold such demonstrations.

Mkweteza said his organization has observed that the reason behind the demos is to create an impression that NAC gave money to BEAM and MWA without following the stipulated procedures.

“We, vendors have observed in disbelief unbecoming behavior of the civil society organization of Lilongwe to create an impression that NAC erred to give money to BEAM and Mulhakho wa Alomwe,” Mkweteza said.

Mkweteza said the vendors understand that NAC paid K3 million for advertising space and K2 million for tables during BEAM fund raising dinner and dance.

“At Mulhakho wa Alomwe cultural festival, NAC did not give to the grouping but it used the money amounting to K9.4 million for traditional leaders transport and accommodation. NAC participated and invited traditional leaders to this cultural festival to provide them with HIV/AIDS information, so in return they would spread the messages to their subjects. Hence we find it laughable for the civil society organizations of Lilongwe to threaten to hold demonstrations next week,” he explained.

He said although it is a constitutional right to hold demonstrations but the intention of holding the planned demonstrations questionable.

Mkweteza said previous demonstrations have ended up with loss of lives and properties therefore called upon government to look into the wellfare of the vendors and provide them with enough security.

“We have seen in the past organizers use vendors, students and members of youth organizations, taking advantage of their ignorance and destitute they become violent and may got injured or killed in the process. We therefore assuring government that vendors of Blantyre are not taking part in unnecessary demonstration like this one,” Mkweteza told journalists.

Mkweteza however appealed  to civil society organizations to cancel the January 13 demos and engage NAC, BEAM and Mulhakho wa Alomwe in a round table discussion to unpack the truth.

The demonstrations spokesman Timothy Mtambo said protests will be peaceful and that police have been informed to ensure there is safety.

Mtambo said the demo’s are part of freedom of expression and assembly, which are human rights to be exercised by the people taking part.

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Malindima
Guest

Peaceful Demo; my foot! just start preparing for the coffins as I foresee man killing man here. The fact that these vendors do not support this is a critical sign that there will be no peace in this Demo.
If people die, blame it on Mtambo etal .

kadwala
Guest

Mtambo bwera kuno ku south uzapange manyi ako a ma demo ndi Kwataine wakoyo muzanya zitosi za nkhuku osati manyinso. Atumbuka opanda nzeru inu.

mbangombe
Guest

Mwazowera mahandauti mutani lero. Mukokerana mpakana kuti? Mwinanso simukudyerarera nawonso. Chitani chomwe chingakuthandizeni.

c4
Guest

I thought we are a God fearing country but some of the comments don’t show that. Lets focus on building our country rather than bringing more damage. I think it’s time we also audited these so called CSOs who even fail to properly disclose how much they get and how they spend it. We see big houses being constructed by some CSO bosses

Bongololo
Guest

If you don’t like the demos then stay away from them. Simple.

jj
Guest

Atumbuka & PP ua stupid. U cant fool Malawi and Malawians. These will be the most failed demos ever. Wait and see

Mute Gama
Guest

The thing is an entity can sell tables at an event to raise money. BEAM sold tables to raise money, period! Advertising space – who were the owners of the space? Is it not BEAM? So BEAM did get the money after all.

M & S
Guest
Ladies and Gents, Lets be quite objective when commenting on such matters rather than being a subject of ridicule to others. Madam, when coming up with an issue have a thorough consultation on such burning matters to avoid (….) as peoples hearts are wolly angered by the power of lost confidence on GVT. I.e. poor Monetory and Fiscal policies by RESERVE BANK (GVT inclusive per say) which results into exorbitant prices of basic needs – where a common man in the village can hardly manage. How can sb for instance appreciate that the Kwacha is appreciating against the dollar. Literatures… Read more »
Nyika Republic
Guest

Satanic Jealous Tumbukas, when the Judiciary went on strike you gave us that dose as Breaking News, now that the Judiciary have announced resumption of working, why don’t you give us that dose as Breaking News as well? Koma sindinaone mtundu wokuda ndi mtima womwe ngati uwu!

Aferazao
Guest

Who paid these street thugs to appear on Malawi-TV? Government money, not so?

Wakumudzi
Guest

mawa timva kuti anawapatsa ma K200,000 foseki
mwafumbata chi scono

wpDiscuz

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