Mutharika faces ‘red card’ campaign, demo on Chilembwe Day

Malawi activists are kicking-off a ‘red card’ campaign against President Bingu wa Mutharika’s rule and plan vigils on Januray 15  a day the nation honours martyre John Chilembwe who led an uprising against the colonial rule in 1915.

A pressure group called ‘Malawi Citizen’ says the Mutharika government deserves nothing less than a red card.

Announcing the commencement of the red card campaign, which also includes whistle blowing and honking, Malawi Citizen said in a statement that  effective 11 January 2012, “all Malawian motorists are asked to blow their vehicle horns three times a day at the following times: 0830am, 1230pm and 1630pm. This must be done continuously for some 30 seconds. This also applies to motorists camping at a fuel stations.”

Show Mutharika a red card

The statement added: “Every Friday, all Malawians are requested to put on red attire or a red scarf in protest to continued suffering of the people.”

‘Red card’

Organisers want thered flag or red card to  be waved in the air when one  see any member of the Cabinet or other senior government officials.

“This must be done in the same way as football referees do when sending off a player who has breached football rules.”

The activists say where possible, when raising the flag, Malawians must shout: “I am not a Chicken.” This will be in protest  to the crass remarks President Mutharika made that Malawians cry like when when faced with challenges like fuel and forex problems.

“The commemoration of the 1915 Chilembwe uprising gives us a window of hope. As Concerned Malawian Citizens, we would like to reject in the strongest terms possible, that Malawians are not Chickens.”

Vigils

On Chilembwe Day, which falls on 15 January, all Malawians are asked to put on red attire and peacefully converge for a three-hour vigil from 9am . In Blantyre,  they will converge at Kamuzu Upper Stadium , in the capital city Lilongwe  the venue will be Area 18 Tower, Zomba at Chancellor College’s  Academic Freedom Park  and Mzuzu city’s Katoto Freedom Park.

Organisers appeal to all Malawians to unite and hold peaceful protest

Said the statement: “97 years after Rt Rev John Chilembwe sacrificed his precious life to fight colonialism, Malawi is at the Crossroads again. Our leadership has failed us big time.”

It reads: “With their own hands, our leaders have created gargantuan problems for the ordinary people. With their own hands, our leaders have depleted all our forex reserves on luxuries such as the presidential jet, Mercedes Benz vehicles for members of the Cabinet and grand high level corruption.

“With their own hands, our leaders have left the country’s health delivery system in a shambles. With their own hands, our leaders have facilitated the deaths of thousands of ordinary poor Malawians through failure to supply hospitals with basic essential drugs.”

The Mutharika administration is also accused of rendering the public ambulance system which serves the medical emergency needs of 90% of Malawians ineffective leading to massive deaths.

The government also stand accused of failing to support private sector growth, denying companies the much needed foreign exchange needed to import raw materials.

“With their own hands, our leaders are forcing companies to cut jobs, rendering thousands of Malawian jobless.”

Added the statement: “With their own hands, our leaders are forcing people to spend long unproductive hours and sleepless nights queuing for fuel at pump stations without any hope.

“Yet, when the suffering public raises their voices to complain about the deteriorating life standards, with their own mouth, our leaders are happy to call its people chickens.”

Reads the statement: “Are you really chickens Fellow Malawians? This is the question that we, as Concerned Malawian Citizens (CMC), would like every Malawian to reflect on as we commemorate the Rt Rev John Chilembwe’s uprising of 1915.”

Organisers warn President Mutharika government not to underestimate  the desire for regime change.

“Malawians succeeded to remove colonialism and one-party dictatorship despite immense resistance. There is absolutely nothing that can stop Malawians today from removing the current dictator and save the nation from further economic deterioration.”

One of the organisers told Nyasa Times the idea was aimed at saving Malawi from the insensitive, corrupt, dictatorial and selfish Mutharika regime.

The activists encourage people to make a red card for themselves out of paper, red plastic or any red material and buy a whistle.

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