Public Affairs Committee (PAC), a multi-faith human rights, democracy and accountability watchdog, says the mass demonstrations that were earlier called off will be held in the coming new year.
The protests were called off to push for enactment of the Electoral Reforms Bills following government’s indication that it would table all the pieces of legislation.
But the bills, including the 50-plus-one electoral system of electing a Head of State, were rejected .
The three Bills which government shot down are the Assumption of Office President (Transitional Arrangement) Bill, Presidential, Parliamentary and Local Government Elections Bill and the Constitutional (Amendment) Bill. They were all shot down on Thursday and on Friday before the Second Reading.
PAC executive secretary Robert Phiri said the board will meet in January and direct the secretariat on when exactly the demonstrations can be held.
Phiri said there were wide consultations on the Bills, using the civil society task force and that the shooting down of the Bills is regrettable and retrogressive to the advancement of democracy for the country.
He said PAC secretariat is ready with the protests, saying they have a minimum of 120 placards and reflectors for all the marchers countrywide.
“We have the banners, which are ready with the messages. So for us, it’s just a matter of the board’s resolution,” Phiri said.
Phiri said the mass demonstrations will be held next year and there should be no doubts about it, expressing the hope that people will participate in the protests.