President of the opposition Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), Peter Mutharika, has urged Malawians to turn out in large numbers to register on the voters’ roll to enable them to vote for a “better tomorrow” and make him Malawi’s next president in the next year’s tripartite elections.
“Everyone who is eligible to register should be able to register. Let us all participate in the elections,” Mutharika said at a voter registration centre in his home village in Thyolo.
Mutharika also said it is the people’s right in a democracy to vote for the person who they want to run the government after 2014.
Driving home a campaign message, Mutharika maintained that he will continue with the ideals of his brother, former president the late Bingu wa Mutharika, when he takes over government, arguing the policies have proven to work.
“The current [Joyce Banda] government has failed. People are dying of hunger and they need food to be strong citizens of the nation,” he said.
Mutharika—a former Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation minister under his brother’s old regime— said he will also pursue the policies in the DPP manifesto which he said have proven themselves to work and being used in the current government through the MDG goals.
“I want to continue issues like ARV plan, welfare centres, and empowerment of women, youth and the greenbelt initiative. As you know, the policies have proven to work and my job as the next president of the country will be to make decisions using these policies which will be influenced by the current climatic, economic and environmental changes,” said Mutharika.
Critics think Mutharika is a shadow of Bingu whose dictatorial ending compelled donors to freeze aid and left Malawians rioting against rising cost of living, shortage of fuel and forex as well as disappearing democratic principles.
But the 73-year-old Mutharika insists he is best placed not only to restore years of food security his brother championed but also bring sanity in the economy and mitigate against the high cost of living.