PAC says Mutharika resignation call ‘open-ended’

The Public Affairs Committee (PAC) says it has not reneged from its call on Malawi President Bingu wa Mutharika to leave office or face civil unrest for mismanaging the economy and trampling on democratic freedoms.

PAC which is made up of religious groups said Mutharika should either quit office or a referendum be called to renew his mandate .

The rights group’s spokesman, Reverend Maurice Munthali, said on Tuesday that they still stick to their resolutions for the benefit of impoverished Malawians  feeling pain with the arrogance of the Mutharika administration.

Mutharika: Resignation call is open-ended

“All efforts that we make in this country particularly governance issues are meant to help this  one man in the village,” said Munthali.

“We feel that we are only implementing that is within our mandate and also help our government to govern this country better,” he added in an interview he gave on Zodiak Radio.

Asked to comment on why PAC had withdrawn the 60 days ultimatum it gave Mutharika to resign, he said: “The resignation for president is open ended. “

He added: “ We felt that  limiting ourselves to 60 days was going to defeat the whole idea.”

Asked if PAC expects Mutharika to abdicate from his office , he said: “It’s up to him.”

PAC threatened “civil disobedience” if its demands were not met, saying the country was bordering on a failed state.

“We will have to go back to the people to ask them what next we have to do if the President does not listen to what people are saying,” said Reverend Munthali.

But Mutharika vowed that he will not step down until his term ends in 2014.

The President told a rally in remarks broadcast live on state radio that “Bingu doesn’t run away from work, Bingu doesn’t desert responsibility even if the going gets tough.”

Ralph Kasambara, a lawyer-cum-politician and former attorney general, has been campaigning for people to stop recognising  President Mutharika, as Head of State .

“These can be done by refusing to pay tax, shunning all government functions as it will be an illegal government, and any meetings called by any minister and president, and – where possible – they must engage in simultaneous public demonstrations to express their anger and frustration,” Kasambara told the local press.

Mutharika has many times  denied accusations of authoritarianism.

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