Vice President Dr Saulos Klaus Chilima has strongly condemn the acts of violence against ruling DPP MPS who are supporting calls for him to represent the party as its presidential candidate in next years’ tripartite elections.
Chilima, who has been silent on calls for him to stand as DPP presidential candidate instead of incumbent Peter Mutharika, broke the silence in a statement released Saturday after some DPP MPs were man handled by DPP youth cadets during the opening of Parliament on Friday by President Mutharika.
A petrol bomb was also thrown at the house of another DPP MP Bon ‘Winiko’ Kalindo burning one of his cars to ashes in the process.
“Vice President of the Republic of Malawi Dr. Saulos Klaus Chilima wishes to condemn in strongest terms the unfortunate scenes of violence and intimidation developing in this country. The attack on Honourable Patricia Kaliati and Honourable Noel Masangwi at the Parliament building in Lilongwe on Friday is most unfortunate and completely unacceptable,” said Chilima in the statement.
“The setting ablaze of Honourable Bon Kalindo’s car at his house is an act of barbarism and has no place in modern Malawi,” added the VP.
He commended the Police for acting with professionalism and urges them to investigate and bring to book all the perpetrators.
Chilima said when Malawians voted for multiparty democracy in 1993, after a gallant fight against the brutality that existed at the time, they said goodbye to a dark age.
“We, as the people of Malawi, should not, therefore, allow any individual or group of individuals masquerading as democrats to take us back to the era of death and darkness in pursuit of their own selfish interests. The acts of the last 36 hours are primitive, uncivilized and satanic and have no space in modern Malawi,” said Chilima.
He urged the youth not to be used ‘by political thugs’ for their selfish interests.
“The engine of our country’s potential are the youth, considering that 64 per cent of the population are aged 24 years and below. Our youth should not be manipulated to indulge in activities that destroy their future. The youth shouldreject any attempts by anyone to use them for violence.”
“Your lives are worth far much more than the pocket change that is offered by political thugs who mastermind such callousness,” advised Chilima.
The second in command also urged all peace-loving Malawians to resist and refrain from being used by selfish individuals whose aim is to tear the nation apart.
“No one should be threatened or intimidated for expressing their political, religious or any views at any time anywhere in this country. Our constitution guarantees all Malawians fundamental freedoms of choice and speech. This country belongs to all of us,” said Chilima.
He was also not particularly pleased with the attack on woman legislator Patricia Kaliati.
“The attack on women is a monumental shame and a colossal disgrace and must stop right now,” he said.
Chilima also condemned the DPP cadets who were disturbing in Parliament when President Mutharika was delivering his state of the nation address. Mutharika himself did not condemn the acts of the cadets.
“What happened in the August house as the President was delivering the State of the Nation Address is both unprecedented and deplorable. We have to respect the leadership of this country regardless of any discontent we may contain in our minds from time to time,” said Chilima.
Information and Communications Technology Minister Nicholas Dausi has joined choruses of those condemning the violent conduct act and has since assured that the matter will be investigated thoroughly.
Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC) led by Timothy Mtambo, Gift Trapence and Charles Kajoloweka, who last week also petitioned government over socio-economic and governance issues, said in a statement that the violence is a manifestation that the DPP tolerates violence as a tool to stifle dissenting views.
They have demanded that President Mutharika should publicly condemn these acts of violence immediately; and that he disciplines his party “on the culture of terror and impunity.”
The rights campaigners said : “Failure to do so we vindicate assertions that he is either an accomplice to the scheme or is not in control of the state of affairs.”Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :