T/A Mlolo asks Nsanje youths to demand candidates legally sign their pledges

Nsanje East Bank Traditional Authority (T/A) Mlolo on Friday dated age-voting youths at a special function held at Fatima School premises where she delivered an inspiring speech that encouraged them to go and utilize their large numbers by voting wisely on May 21.

T/A Mlolo delivering her speech
The attentive youths
T/A Mlolo and her husband

She urged the youth to attend all political debates and participate in asking the aspirants questions as to what they shall do for them as youths as well as to their communities as a whole.

Mlolo advised them to take a leading role in making sure that they officially document the campaign benchmarks that the politicians will have pledged and add on to what they want them to do for them.

“Just before the polling day, after everything has been documented, demand the aspiring MP or Councillor to sign for it as an official agreement that this is their campaign benchmarks that need to be fulfilled once voted into office.

“Take them to task, it’s your right to do so because they need your vote. Both you and the political candidates should keep a copy in a safe place. An Advocacy Group for the community should be formed that will monitor whether the promises are being met.

“And when they are not, then you have the right to take them to courts of law or to the legal affairs committee of Parliament,” T/A Mlolo said, amid a wild round of applause from the enthusiastic youths.

Accompanied by fellow traditional leaders under her — Senior Chief Kalonga; Group Village Headman Chapinga; aspiring councillor for Kalulu Ward Rose Makiyi and National Initiative for Civic Education (NICE) Public Trust civic education officer, T/A Mlolo urged the youths to attend all campaign rallies regardless of their political party allegiances in order to analyze what the aspirants are pledging for them to make an informed decision as to who to vote for.

“Our role as chiefs during elections is to remain impartial because before and after the elections we treat each one of our subjects as equal. We wouldn’t want to influence your decisions and that is why we the chiefs are saying ‘allowing each and every aspirant to hold rallies anywhere they wish to do so’.

“This is so that every voter doesn’t have to be influenced whom to vote. And this is what I plead with you — go and attend all campaign rallies and from what you have learnt there sit down with your peers and your elderly parents to analyze and debate what is good for you and what is not.

“Help your elderly parents to understand what these politicians are promising to do for our areas and the country as a whole and on the polling day, encourage each other to go and vote and do so wisely.

“The community’s Advocacy Group will create checks and balances; transparency and a corruption-free environment for the good of developing our communities.”

Taking his turn, NICE Trust’s civic education officer said he was impressed with the youths enthusiasm in taking part in the electoral process, saying a Youth Network Group was formed that coordinates development projects activities.

He also commended the youths for not being used by politicians as agents of violence and asked them to maintain it by remaining neutral and tolerant amongst themselves.

“Politicians usually use the youths to perpetuate violence but I must assure you, Gogo Chalo that here there is no single reports of your youths that implicates them of being used for such.

“As for you, like I keep saying, not voting is voting is on its own like you have voted because you let others vote in bad leaders. So go and vote and join hands with the elderly parents by analyzing the strengths do weaknesses of the pledges being made by the politicians so that they too are well informed.

“And also for the Youth Network Group, to avoid null and void, teach each other and the elders on how to vote,” he said.

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