Rights activist Timothy Mtambo has told opposition leaders in the country to take action against President Peter Mutharika for his failure to fire Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) commissioners after the pollster said registration for voters for the Constitutional Court sanctioned fresh presidential election starts on March 10.
The Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC) chairperson said the Malawi Congress Party (MCP) and UTM should not just be political spectators as Mutharika is playing them political games over the commissioners.
“Opposition political parties must take a leading role to stop Mutharika from playing his political games. These parties can organise their supporters to hold protests,” he said.
His comment comes as MEC says it will open registration of voters for the May 19, 2020 presidential election on March 10 in central region.
His comments also come after the expiry of the seven days HRDC gave Mutharika to fire the commissioners or face unspecified action.
Mtambo said HRDC would meet to chart the next action after the failure by the president to fire the commissioners after both the Constitutional Court and parliament found them incompetent to handle another election.
MCP spokesperson Maurice Munthali said the party does not have to push Mutharika fire the commissioners, saying as a Constitutional lawyer himself, he should know the failure of doing so.
“He also needs to read the mood of Malawians. Malawians want a new set of commissioners to run the forthcoming elections,” said Munthali.
UTM spokesperson Joseph Chidanti Malunga said Mutharika cannot derail the process because of his personal ego.
“We cannot have one person derailing the whole process,” said Malunga.
Presidential spokesperson Mgeme Kalilani said the President is still looking at the recommendations by the Public Appointments Committee of parliament.
“He is aware of the Constitutional Court order, he is also aware of the recommendations from the Public Appointments Committee of parliament. And he is aware of the appeal case on the matter,” Kalirani said.
He said Mutharika has 21 days to act on the electoral reform bills.
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