Giving handouts by political parties may be banned come 2019 elections if proposals by Centre Multiparty Democracy (CMD) are taken on board and enacted into law.
CMD with funding from Tilitonse is championing the review of the Political Parties Registration and Regulation) Act, the review has culminated into a draft bill that aims to repeal the current Act and replace it with a Political Parties Act.
According to CMD executive director Kizito Tenthani the consultations on the draft bill have been on going, all with the aim of ensuring that the bill represents the aspirations of Malawians.
“These consultations have led to several revisions of the bill. CMD would therefore like to re-engage the media with an aim of providing the current status of the bill, and to define the next steps,” explained Tenthani
On banning handouts, Tenthani said if the proposed law is taken on board it will get lead of handouts from both political party and its agents.
“Many people in the country want this handout issue removed claiming it has created laziness and dependency syndrome among masses,” said Tenthani.
He added that political parties with no money or resources for handouts are left out in different ways as they are deemed as not useful by those giving the handouts.
“Contributions we are getting from Malawians on the matter, it is clear that most people are not for handouts and they are for independence and issue based electioneering,” discloses Tenthani
He states that such action can only be taken by the registrar of political of political parties not any other person as stipulated by the proposed act.
According to Tenthani, the 2015 political parties’ bill also hinges on a number of things including registration, regulation and functioning of political parties locally.
Among other things the bill seeks at addressing challenges being faced when registering, financing and functioning of political parties.
Currently Malawi uses outdated act in registering political parties which was enacted during the one party regime of Malawi Congress Party (MCP).
Malawi has over 50 registered political parties of which 23 parties expressed interest to participate in controversial 2014 tripartite elections. Out of that 17 submitted nomination papers and 6 made it to the presidency, parliamentary and local government elections.
Meanwhile, political parties are expressing concern on the matter accusing CMD of plotting to kill democracy as some parties deemed briefcase parties will face the chop.
The parties are also accusing CMD of not doing enough survey on handouts arguing they only help the less privileged to live better lives.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :