Quasi-religious body, the Public Affairs Committee (PAC) says it will in October ask all presidential canddates sign a non-violence pact that will enable dialogue and mediation on possible conflicts during the 2019 elections.following the emergence of political violence.
On Saturday, two vehicles, one belonging to United Transformation Movement (UTM) and another belonging to Mzimba North MP Agnes Nyalonje were burnt to ashes just hours before the UTM leader SaulosChilima addressed a rally in Mangochi.
PAC chairperson the Reverend Felix Chingota said the move is one of the activities the quasi-religious body will engage in prior to the elections.
He said the political violence is now worrisome, saying Malawi voted for multiparty democracy therefore leaders should tolerate those with political dissenting views.
“We want the presidential candidates sign a pact assuring us that their supporters would not engage in political violence. This political violence is worrisome,” said Chingota.
He said PAC is now dating the candidates so that they sign the pact ahead of the May 21 elections.
Nyasa Times investigations show that the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) secretary general Gresedler Jeffreu travelled to Zomba just a day before the torching of the vehicles, handed over money to the DPP director of youth for eastern region Steven Bamusi who masterminded the whole plot to torch the vehicles.
However, President Peter Mutharika on Tuesday condemned the violence in Mangochi in what the opposition and civil society organisations see as a face saver as all fingers are pointing at the DPP for the torching of the vehicles.
Bamusi was notorious in such clandestine activities when he was in United Democratic Front before he defected to DPP after the UDF lost power following the decision by former president Bingu wa Mutharika to dump the party that sponsored him into power to form the DPP.
Chingola said there cannot be free, fair and credible elections if there is political violence.
He also warned political parties against having high hopes that they would win elections basing on high attendance of people of political rallies, saying this could be a recipe for problems after the poll resuts have been announced.
Commenting on the issue, PAC publicity secretary Father Peter Mulomole said the 2019 Peace Accord document will compel leaders to abide by the election result announcement procedures, thereby minimising conflicts between contesting parties.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :