Evangelical Church of Malawi challenges Sec 65 injunction: Converge for vigil

The Evangelical Church of Malawi (ECM) has filed for removal of injunctions some Parliamentarians obtained restraining Speaker Henry Chimunthu Banda invoking the anti-defection law on legislatures believed to have crossed the floor.

ECM through its lawyers filed for the application at Lilongwe High Court registry  on Wednesday morning, National General Secretary Reverend Otherwise Mapute has confirmed.

“Our lawyers are currently at the court filing our application to vacate the injunctions so the Speaker should be free to invoke the Section. Whatever will transpire at the court will determine our next step on the 15-points proposition to ensure Section 65 is implemented during the current meeting of Parliament,” Mapute said in an interview.

Mapute disclosed that meanwhile about 50, 000 people have gathered at an anonymous place in Lilongwe in readiness for a vigil at Parliament but refused to divulge more details.

Mapute: Fight to vacate Section 65 injunctions
Mapute: Fight to vacate Section 65 injunctions

“The place is kept anonymous until we have finalized the discussions with Police and City Assembly. I hope everything will be set by the end of the day”.

Among the 15-points, ECM says through its taskforce will organize demonstrations and national crusades apart from holding vigils at Parliament and in constituencies of concerned MPs, write letters to be read in all churches across the country and mobilize support.

He said the failure to implement Section 65 undermines democratic principles and it’s a sin. ECM has about 1.7 million members across the country.

Opposition MCP, UDF and DPP as well as Public Affairs Committee (PAC) have emphasized for Chimunthu Banda to invoke the Section during a month-long meeting of Parliament to start on Friday.

However, Chimunthu Banda said will only invoke the Section once the injunctions are vacated. He said the issue about Section 65 will not be part of deliberations until all legal battles are concluded.

Last week, the Attorney General (AG) Anthony Kamanga told the local media his office has not received any instruction to vacate the injunctions which are stopping some MPs obtained stopping Chimunthu Banda invoking the anti-defection law.

The AG is legal advisor for both the Speaker and government.

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