Following calls by Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) and development partners for Malawi to abolish the death penalty, the Legal Affairs Committee of Parliament will conduct public inquiries on the proposed abolition of the death penalty in the country.
Clerk of Parliament, Fiona Kalemba, has disclosed this in a statement inviting members of the general public and interested stakeholders to make written submissions to the committee or attend the inquiries, during which they can make oral submissions.
According to the statement, the public inquiries will be conducted following the adoption, by the National Assembly, of a Progress Report on the proposed abolition of the death penalty, during the 2022/23 Budget Meeting of Parliament.
“The report sought the mandate of the National Assembly to allow the Legal Affairs Committee carry out public inquiries in order to thoroughly consult and solicit views from the general public on this very important subject matter, before making recommendations to the National Assembly,” the statement reads in part.
The statement further says the Legal Affairs Committee would also like to specifically hear from members of the general public who have a vested interest in the matter i.e. individuals whose relations were murdered or whose relations were convicted of murder and sentenced to death or individuals whose death sentences were commuted to a number of years and were subsequently released from custody.
Though the death penalty still exists in the laws of Malawi, no Head of State has ever signed for it since the country adopted democracy in 1994, which is seen to be resonating well with calls for abolition of the death penalty.
According to the statement, the public inquiries, to be starting at 10.00 a.m, will be held in all the three regions of the country as follows:
i. Central Region: Tuesday, 10th May, 2022 at Parliament Building in Lilongwe.
ii. Northern Region Friday, 13th May, 2022 at Grand Palace Hotel in Mzuzu; and
iii. Southern Region, Friday, 20th May, 2022 at Amaryllis Hotel in Blantyre.
For more information on the public inquiry, the general public and interested stakeholders are encouraged to contact the clerk for the Legal Affairs Committee Mr. Moffat Makande on 0888511574 or email: [email protected].Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :