Evangelical Association of Malawi (EAM) which has 68 church denominations and 58 Christian organisations has issued a statement to make a fresh call for beleaguered Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) chairperson Jane Ansah to resign for peace and harmony to prevail in the country.
Signed by EAM board chairperson Chatha Msangaambe and general secretary the Reverend Francis Mkandawire, EAM statement states that Ansah’s clinging to the position is creating unnecessary tension and lawlessness in the country.
The statement comes amidst calls by Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC) and other stakeholder have been leading nationwide protests since June this year, demanding that Ansah resigns for presiding over a flawed May 21 presidential election in which President Peter Mutharika was declared winner.
In the statement made available to Nyasa Times, EAM said it is concerned with resurgence of politically motivated violence and breakdown of rule of law in the country.
It said Malawi is on a “self-destruction path” and that should be a cause for serious worry and a cause for serious reflection to all peace loving and patriotic Malawians.
The EAM observed that the divisions caused by the recent disputed electoral results have been further worsened by the prolonged demonstrations pressing for Ansah ouster.
“Currently, the conflict is taking some unhealthy and ugly tribal overtones. We are at the verge of civil strife. Unfortunately, our political leaders seem to be very indifferent to what is brewing up in our country. This is very sad,” reads the statement in part.
EAM has since asked Ansah to step aside for the sake of national peace and harmony, saying her continuation as chair of the electoral body against public outcry is creating unnecessary tensions and lawlessness in the country.
“It is not a weakness but a sign of strength, maturity and wisdom, to step aside, for the sake of national peace, especially when masses demand so. In fact, such an action would be a true sign of patriotism and a gesture of genuine love for our beloved nation,” reads the statement,
EAM has since appealed to HRDC leadership to stop demonstrations once government heeds to the call for Ansah to resign.
HRDC had vowed to continue with the nationwide demonstrations until Ansah resigns or is fired by Mutharika.
President Mutharika recently told BBC that he will not fire Ansah as demanded by the HRDC.
Ansah, a judge at Malawi Supreme Court of Appeal, has previously dismissed calls for her resignation, saying she will wait for the court process where Malawi Congress Party (MCP) presidential candidate Lazarus Chakwera and UTM Party presidential candidate Saulos Chilima are jointly challenging the results in the Constitutional Court and seeking nullification of the presidential poll results. They cite alleged flaws in the results management process as a key factor for their case.
The Malawi Law Society (MLS) recently also persuaded Ansah to “deeply reflect on the value of remaining in office” when her stay seems to be a cause for social disruption and political unrest.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :