Registrar demands CDEDI registration details release political party funding info

Registrar of Political Parties Chikumbutso Namelo has angered Centre for Democracy and Economic Development Initiatives (CDEDI) for demanding registration details of the organization before he could provide information on source of financing for major political parties in Malawi.

Namiwa -The registrar’s response is a mockery to Malawians

On May 17, 2021, CDEDI wrote to the Office of the Registrar of Political Parties, requesting for the declaration of information on the source of financing for major political parties.

The organization demanded that this information should be in the form of cash, assets and in kind received as donations within and outside the country.

But Namelo, in his response dated May 19, 2021, also demanded that CDEDI should produce evidence of its registration with the Malawi Government before he could release the information.

“You wrote us as CDEDI and accordingly, I would like to request you to kindly furnish us with your organization’s registration details as we have been unable to find the same in our records. For your information, it is our procedure to verify the registration status of any registered entity before attending to any application or request made by the entity,” demands the Registrar of Political Parties.

“I look forward to receiving evidence of registration of your organization soonest so that I can substantively respond to your letter,” adds Namelo.

But when he addressed journalists in Lilongwe on Friday, CDEDI executive director Sylvester Namiwa accused the Registrar of Political Parties of playing some old and archaic tricks in its efforts to ignore their demands for disclosure of information on political party financing.

“Instead of responding to the call, CDEDI regrets to inform Malawians that Mr. Chikumbutso Namelo, who is the current Registrar of Political Parties, responded by asking us to furnish him with our registration details as a precondition to making available the information we are seeking. We find such a response as a mockery to Malawians, total disrespect of the office he is occupying, and a futile attempt to defend the indefensible,” said Namiwa.

He reiterated that disclosure of information declared by political parties as regards party financing is the only sure way of addressing the root cause of deep-rooted corruption in the country, which according to studies, claims 30 percent of the national budget.

But Namiwa said as a law-abiding citizen and non-governmental organization, CDEDI submitted its registration certificate no. 01/251 on Wednesday, 26th May, 2021.

“Following this submission, we have extended our ultimatum with two (2) days, and we are expecting positive response from the registrar’s office on or before Monday, 31st May, 2021. Should our request hit a blank wall, CDEDI will still proceed to seek legal intervention on our demands, which are enshrined in the country’s constitution,” he said.

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