MCP engages donor agencies to table electoral reforms bill in Malawi Parliament    

Malawi Congress Party (MCP) is engaging some donor agencies to overtake the Law Commission and smuggle into Parliament a secretly prepared bill proposing electoral reforms in the country. Nyasa Times can reveal.

Dimba: To table the private motion on electoral reforms

Dimba: To table the private motion on electoral reforms

The bill is set for presentation in Parliament on Thursday by an MCP Member of Parliament for  Lilongwe South MP Peter Dimba as a private members motion.

Officials from National Democratic Institute (NDI) confirmed Dimba asked for funding for him to present the private members motion.

The motion seeks to force the government change the electoral laws before the 2019 general election.

Among other things, the new laws will make a candidate win the presidency only after getting over 50 per cent of the votes cast.

In the 2014 polls, Mutharika got a mere 36 per cent of the vote.

NDI officials said they rejected Dimba’s request and referred him to Malawi Economic Justice Network.

Dimba confirmed having approached NDI for funding on the motion.

Officials from parliament said what Dimba did was irregular as all funding requests come from parliament not individual MPs.

According to MCP sources, party president Lazarous Chakwera fears that  he cannot win elections in Malawi in the current set up because his party cannot manage to get support from the south, the north and the eastern regions of Malawi hence need for reforms to change the  legal winning formula.

The three regions are where the MCP unleashed untold atrocities on Malawians during it’s 31 years regime under the brutal dictatorship of Dr Banda.

For the past 25 years the MCP has been reduced to a central region party failing to convince Malawians from the other regions to vote for it.

In October this year, the Law Commission Chairperson; Gertrude Hiwa told donors and other stakeholder under the Malawi Electoral Cycle Support Project that it would not be possible for it to complete the review process before end of this year because they still have a lot of work to do on the bill.

Hiwa said the Commission needed to discharge its duties with professionalism and unwavering adherence to basic ethical standards of independence, responsibility, transparency and accountability without pressure from politicians.

The Commission proposed March 2017 as the deadline for the review. This development irked Chakwera who is desperate for the reforms.

Steve Duwa of the Malawi Electoral Support Network (Mesn) and members of its board  are said to be part of  the plot to bulldoze the bill in the House.

Duwa has been exchanging emails with MESN board members copied to Chakwera and Dimba on  underground efforts by MCP and some civil society organisation to source funding for the drafting of the  MCP electoral reforms bill to replace the one prepared by the Law Commission.

In one such emails dated December 11, Duwa called for an emergency board meeting to discuss funding of the MCP electoral reforms bill.

“I am writing in  connection with the email I sent out yesterday on the requested from Hon P. Dimba asking for MESN to support financially the drafting of a private members bill on electoral reforms”, wrote Steven Duwa.

Duwa said although the project under which the funding was to be tapped ended, the DFID was willing to fund the secret project outside the project period.

“As indicated, the bill is due for presentation this coming Thursday. Funds are from DFID through NDI under the project which unfortunately we already closed on 30th November but they are ready to give a no cost extension for purpose of this bill and other related activities’’, added Duwa.

Duwa assured his board members and MCP leader that all is well about the scheme.

‘‘I write therefore to invite you to the emergency board meeting on Tuesday afternoon in Lilongwe. Venue to be communicated later. All logistics will be handled by NDI,” Duwa said.

Duwa’s email is also copied to  Timothy Mtambo of Centre for Human Rights and Rehabilitation-CHRR, MacBain Mkandawire of Yoneco, Emma Kaliya of NGO-GCN, a Mr Lewis Msiyadungu and CCAP Nkhoma Synod secretariat, among others.

Surprisingly, while DFID is willing to give a ‘no cost extension’ for this MCP driven bill as shown in Duwa’s email, the Law Commission’s request for similar  work on the reforms was rejected by the same  donors.

Although the MCP plans to present the bill in Parliament on Thursday, work on the review of the country’s electoral laws by the Malawi Law Commission is still in progress and the commission is expected to come up with a report at least March next year.

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Ntumbuka
Guest
Not me but someone posted: “Federalism or state of Nyika cannot materialize coz over 50 % of Northerners don’t prefer separate country or federalism. It’s only a handful of discontented people (coz they lost elections) led by Mzomera, Enock Chihana and Kamplepo that push it in futility. Over half don’t want MCP to rule again because of its notoriety and neglect of the north. MCP killed Orton Chirwa, Chakufwa, Dunduzu, Yatuta and Mkwapatira Mhango. Dr Laz should apologize on behalf of MCP and MCP should compensate those families. In short, people don’t need MCP, federalism or State of Nyika but… Read more »
Chipapwiche Kajhalwiche
Guest
Chipapwiche Kajhalwiche

EmuSiPi is a party of death and darkness – one late ntumbuka told us this in the past.

To you thengere logic mbwenumbwenus…..show me ntumbuka who has the who has the potential to be president….who? and mention 5.

mahope a kabwila
Guest

Someone is smoking something serious here. You argue that under the current system MCP cannot win and they want to change the formula? what you are saying is like saying I cannot manage to get 36 percent (current passing mark) and arguing that it should be increased to 50 percent.

Musiye kuchindana kwambiri ku MCP muyambe kuganiza. Kungokhala ndi member wa mkazi mumupange basi. I fear for Kabwila. You are victimising her chifukwa amakana kumuchinda

Odala
Guest

Chokani ma Hule amiyambo yopha ana kuchosa fumbi ndichani? mwadfzadza pa central kudzalima kwathu kuno kikkkkkkkk!!!!!

koma abale inu eeh
Guest
Why is it that us Malawians seem to have our priorities up side down, most of the time? Like, this idea of adopting a 50+1 rule. When people don’t have even m’gaiwa (basic staples) to eat; and they vote on an empty stomach – shame. We are a poor country, even by African standards. Elections cost money, and our democratic elections have been funded by foreign governments. Elections are always expensive to run. And so who will pay for the inevitable second round? Ok, we’ll go begging again! Shame. As pointed out already, these rich democratic countries, we admire, do… Read more »
koma abale inu eeh
Guest

TAKE BACK THE LAST SO-CALLED “CORRECTION”

koma abale inu eeh
Guest

“Koma abale inu eeh” here:
Regret the error: The second line GDP per Cap ….. Zambia… 4300 should read Malawi 4300. Then the picture makes sense.

Harawara
Guest
Reading the comments shows how shallow most commentators are> With this crop of thinking and mindset this country will remain poor. Laws are not for political parties or tribes. No tribe or region can benefit from a law in a special way. Good laws benefit every civilized citizen. The 50+1 will not guarantee any political party an out right win. Rather it will consolidate support for a true winner. Look at the current situation someone who won 36% ruling. How about 64% which is majority who is attending to their needs. If democracy means rule of majority then 36% is… Read more »
Zaya ku Nkhongo
Guest
@Harawara, FIRSTLY Malawi does not belong to the Chewas only. It for everybody that calls themselves Malawian. SECONDLY, check your dictionary for the meaning of majority – it simple means the greater number. Whether APM wins 36% or 10% or 5% as long as he has more votes than other candidates he carries the day. THIRDLY, Malawi political landscape in its current form is heavily polarised by regions. There can never be an outright winner in any national election. So what does that mean? Tizipani tingono tingono nu kuyambila MCP muzayamba kuphatikizana to attain 50+ majority and the result product… Read more »
kaka
Guest

Sorry kuti ndiwe mmodzi mwa ana opanda bambo chifukwa chosasa fumbi!!!

Zaya ku Nkhongo
Guest

@Kaka, bola iweyo mwananga kuteloku ambuyako aja sunakumane nawo aja ndine amene. Uwafuse masteni mofasa ku deniko akufotokozela bwino bwino kuti abambo ako aja nda Zaya ku Nkhongo!

Chipapwiche Kajhalwiche
Guest
Chipapwiche Kajhalwiche

Wanyau ndi aliyense wochokera ku nyaubelt…Chakwera inclusive. Mufuna munamize yani? Kwao kwao kwao…kkkkkkkkkkkk

Ntumbuka
Guest

O’Chakwera ana akumbwambwanitsani. As long as your party is called EmuSipi, forget votes from the south and north. We have not forgotten how dambwecraft was used to run this country. EmuSipi is a party of death and darkness regardless having some fallen clergyperson at the helm. I suggest changing the name of the party….kkkkkkkkkk

mavuto malawi
Guest
Iam from North I Can not vote for.DDP/APM never. Its sad that there are Northerners who vote for DDP/Muntharikas. I remember What Bingu said after Northerners voted for him. “It did not make any differenti With your voted” Peter also said something about Northerners. How come these two brothers who run away from Malawi come and u give them free hand to mess up with our little money, Chakwela is not Kamuzu Banda. So dont judge him. He is not even related to Kamuzu. During Kamuzu Many Tumbukas had high positions. How Many Tumbukas in position or government to day?… Read more »
Achi
Guest
The reason MCP is pushing this noble course is cos Malawi Law Commission has failed Malawian, has failed to move at the right pace. Note that 3 years have gone now, and the issue of a faulty electoral system has been there over several decades. A good and vibrant system will guarantee a greater benefit to the nation and not MCP, and ensure a better and accepted person at plot #1. All evil non nyaus, the fearful DPPs must know that developed / developing countries world-over have better electoral systems. LOMWEs? Why do u hate good things? What evil has… Read more »
Truthful
Guest

While people are busy commenting on this article, please NOTE that the contents are highly suspicious and biased. The nitty-gritty details of email communication, the purpose of the communication, the mention of Chakwera colluding with Duwa, etc are all outright LIES. By the way, Duwa is DPP sympathiser!!!!!

hakoni
Guest

mukungonamizana mcp singawine ana wathu tinawauza zomwe mumachita ndipo 50 mukapeza kuti kucentral komweko kaya tiona bola moyo .

wpDiscuz

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