The Malawi Congress Party (MCP) president Dr Lazarus Chakwera has conceded defeat to the newly elected president Professor Peter Mutharika but insisted it was his party which would have been credible winners.
Chakwera – likely to Leader of Opposition in Parliament – told a news conference in the capital Lilongwe on Saturday that he telephoned President Mutharika on Saturday 6:15 morning in order to deliver the congratulatory message on behalf of MCP.
“Today at 6:15 am I called the President elect Professor Arthur Peter Mutharika who has since been sworn in as fifth President of the Republic of Malawi to congratulate him and wish him well,” said Chakwera.
Chakwera said he hoped the President will be successful in guiding the nation.
Commenting on the just ended tripartite elections, Chakwera claimed he did not lose.
“We believe we did not lose. The systems failed us and all this happened in full view of all Malawians and the world. And we believe that Malawians would still have loved to know what really happened.
“We find ourselves therefore in a position where on Malawi Electoral Commission’s (MEC) own admission the result of Presidential vote is flawed but they are compelled to announce it and on that basis the President of Malawi declared,” he noted.
“This is a very sad situation where our democracy and the will of the people of Malawi are held to ransom by virtue of some technical phrase of law that says the result must be given in 8 days regardless of glaring fraud and irregularities,” said the former cleric.
Chakwera said MCP is aware that the result which declared Mutharika dully elected President “can be challenged” and added that “in fact it ought to be challenged but to what effect and for what benefit to the Malawian people.”
He said the institutions put in place to safeguard democracy, MEC and the Judiciary, “have confirmed their inadequacies.”
Said Chakwera: “We have always believed that to every wrong there must be a remedy but our experiences since May 20 tell us otherwise.”
Chakwera said he has conceded defeat for sake of peace.
“We now bow to the reality of the present situation and say let us move on. Let us keep peace. There can only be one President at a time,” he said.
Chakwera, who came second in the election with 27.8% of the vote? said history will judge him and MCP “ kindly” on what happened in the election pertaining to the declaration of the Presidential winner.
Mutharika is the brother of the late President Bingu wa Mutharika, who died in office in 2012, and obtained 36.4% of the vote, according to the electoral commission.—(Additional reporting by Wanga Gwede, Nyasa Times)Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :