The United Democratic Front (UDF) in the eastern region has said they “are confident” the party—under the leadership of Atupele Muluzi—will form end politics violence that have marred the country the last few days.
The political violence in Mangoch, Veronica Katanga, 32, and her UTM Party colleagues were seen in a video clip being victimised by suspected Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) operatives. The clip went viral on the Internet on Sunday.
In the clip, the woman and some men were seen being ordered to take off their branded UTM Party T-shirts with Chilima’s portrait emblazoned on the chest.
UDF vice president for the eastern region, Lilian Patel, said it was sad that “things have turned into this manner.”
Accompanied by legislator Aisha Mambo and Mangochi Central shadow Member of Parliament (MP), Yusuf Kusweje, Patel condemned the acts of violence as “unfortunate.”
Said Patel: “We must say that as UDF we are disturbed that someone had the audacity to do that to a fellow human being; let alone, because of politics. This is not the Malawi that the UDF, which also has women in its ranks and files, fought for in 1994.”
According to Patel, there is a “systematic propaganda” by some political groups to dent the image of the UDF party and its leadership by using violence incidents in Mangochi.
“Malawians should be reminded that we had by-elections here in Mangochi where UDF was contesting and there were no reports of violence. These facts were also acknowledged by the leadership of the Malawi Congress Party (MCP) when the results were announced.
“Just recently, the MCP and our leader [Atupele] held public meetings at Monkey Bay at venues and there was no single incident of violence,” she said.
UDF has since disowned one Maurice Kasinde who is suspected to be the mastermind of political violence in Mangochi, saying he is not a member of the party’s security detail.
UDF spokesperson Ken Ndanga dismissed reports linking Kasinde, who is said to be on the run, to UDF.
“Please don’t associate Atupele Muluzi with that kind of barbaric action. Even UDF supporters in Mangochi are very angry with what happened on Sunday”.
DPP spokesperson Nicholas Dausi, who is also Minister of Homeland Security, earlier this week also denied that DPP members were unleashing violence, claiming the perpetrators were masquerading as DPP youth cadets.
Over the past two weeks, the country registered a number of political violence cases, including the assault of Mulanje South legislator and UTM director of youth Bon Kalindo, assault of MCP supporter Edward Govati in Blantyre and the torching of MCP flags in Mangochi.
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