Demos non-negotiable but Malawi is hurting around Ansah

The decision by the High Court Judge Kenyatta Nyirenda to dismiss the Attorney General’s injunction to stop the anti-Jane Ansah protests in the cities of Blantyre, Lilongwe and Mzuzu is a success for democracy and upholding the constitutional right of the citizens to demonstrate as enshrined in Section 38 of the constitution.

A police vehicle torche din Lilongwe during the Jane Ansah must fall demos

The ruling puts to rest attempts by government to use the law to block demonstrations. Previously government has used different strategies to stifle freedom of expression. For example, the notorious  Democrtaic Progressive Party (DPP)  cadets have been deployed at assembly points for demonstrations, especially in Blantyre, to beat up and frustrate demonstrators; DPP functionaries have issued threats and intimidated demonstration organisers; the Inspection General of Police Rodney Jose  has thrown the constitution out of the window and used the Police Act to stop the demonstrations; Some Human Rights Defenders Coalition  (HRDC) officials have been arbitrarily arrested to crush their spirit; government has sponsored pro-Jane Ansah demonstrations, state-controlled MBC has been used to discredit demonstrations and a wave of propaganda and fake news from the DPP have been used to dampen the spirit of  organisers to forge ahead with ‘Jane Ansah Must Fall Campaign’. But all has been in vain.

However, the High Court ruling has dented the image of the Attorney General. As the principal legal adviser of the government he should be the last person to prevent people from demonstrating peacefully. He should not have applied for a court injunction to stop demonstrations. This is stifling freedom of the expression. He knows too well that demonstrations are part of human rights provided for in the constitution which is the supreme law of the land.

It is strange that the Attorney General was trying to stop the demonstrations (regardless of the grounds he was advancing) when he knows the constitution is above any other law. So one cannot use  the Police Act or any other act to stop the demonstrations. The Inspector General of Police, Attorney General or indeed the President cannot stop demonstrations.  Unfortunately, people who are knowledgeable about the law and should educate others and serve as role models are in the forefront of trying to undermine the law.

The Attorney General in his application demanded that the organisers pay a sum of K2 billion as surety. Again, this is a strange decision that could best be described as political. Whether he came up with this decision on his own or from elsewhere, it lacks any legal basis.

It should be admitted that criminal elements have infiltrated the demonstrations as reflected through violence and looting. However, criminal behaviour is not a cogent reason to stop demonstrations.  It the duty of police to safeguard people’s  property and life.

Instead of stopping demonstrations, the Attorney General should have advised the police to devise other strategies to deal with crowd control rather than teargas demonstrators anyhow, a situation that has led to the people losing trust in the police.  The army has offered to assist the police clamp down on ruffians and criminals during and after demonstrations. The police could do justice by taking advantage of this window of help to arrest criminals. Demonstrations are non-negotiable!

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GRM
Guest
GRM

Lowani, it is not strange. This happens when a well trained Chancellor college lawyer is taking instructions from a lawyer trained in the diploma Mills of United States of America

Concerned foreigner
Guest

This needs to stop, disrupting business and the economy. Eveyday people are looting and taking advantage, Malawi is a nice country and can remain this way, but if you let people use to this behavior then it will always happen. Let Malawi be safe as always and don’t spoil it…
Stop this now

watoto
Guest
watoto

Dear stupid foreigner
I don’t need peace where thieves rule this country. Am ready even to fight to my last drop of blood. Stop this nuisance!! May be you are protecting your stay here…I don’t care…let the one who won this election lead us. NOT a thief of my vote.

Tariq
Guest
Tariq

The looters are DPP plants… Police never arrests DPP people. That’s why they are doing nothing.

TOSH
Guest

CHARLIE YU MUST UNDERSTAND CHAKWERA AND CHILIMA ARE NOT WAR LORDS , THEY FOR THE TRUTH , AKUFUNA KUKONZA MALAWI KUTI AKHALE OKOMERA ALIYENSE OSATI KAGULU KOCHEPA KUMAMVETSETSA ZINTHUZI

Charie
Guest
Charie

Chilima ndi chakwera avomeleze kut analuza .mbusa wankhondo zachisoni ndithu

katayeni chitutu
Guest
katayeni chitutu

kuluza atakubera?mumuuze wakubayo atule pansi udindo

watoto
Guest
watoto

Sangavomeleze zopusa mutaba…that nuisance can not tolerate in today’s Malawi

TOSH
Guest

mizimu ya anthu ya kwiya Mulungu amatha kuwumitsa mitima ya anthu ndipo ngati pitala samchotsa ansah ntchito nsanga ndikuwona chachikulu chikuchiti whereby it will be too late for pitala kuchikonza

Mitengo
Guest
Mitengo

I don’t see Ansah resigning. The stage that she could have resigned has long passed. More demos yet to come but the solution lies in the court verdict for the case that begins on the 8th.

watoto
Guest
watoto

No resignation more riots … opportunity cost, the cost of the best altinative forgone

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