Police to stop opposition leaders from using helicopter, convoy

Malawi opposition presidential contenders will not be allowed to use helicopters and a presidential-like convoy during their 2014 campaign, the Malawi Police Service has sounded the warning.

Leader of the country’s former ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Peter Mutharika has been using a motorcade similar to that of the country’s president with an open Land Rover.

The United Democratic Front (UDF) also has an open Land Rover similar to that of the President which its presidential candidate had been using during campaign rallies.

But reports also indicate that the two former ruling parties- UDF and DPP- are planning to separately unveil helicopters branded in their party colours which they want to use during the 2014 presidential elections’ campaign.

But Police have warned the opposition leaders to stop imitating presidential motorcade when conducting their rallies.

“It is a crime to imitate a president in any other way and anyone found doing so shall be arrested and face the long arm of the law,” Malawi Police Service Deputy Publicist Kelvin Maigwa told Capital Radio FM.

He said it was a breach of Police Act as stipulated in Section 20 for any opposition politician, apart from the Head of State, to use a motorcade comprising of motor-bikes and even an open Land Rover.

Malawi is expected to hold the fifth democratic polls in 2014 after 1994, 1999, 2004 and 2009 in which the first three were won by UDF with the last going to the DPP.

Meanwhile, a survey that a newspaper conducted during the past seven days shows that 59 percent of the people interviewed believe that opposition parties could win the 2014 elections.

Accoriding to Nation on Sunday, the people were surveyed in face-to-face interviews in 18 districts as well as through Facebook and the short messaging service (SMS).

Ruling PP spokesperson, Hophmally Makande, said the party is not worried by the findings of the survey.


Peter Mutharika in an open Land Rover.


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