United Democratic Front (UDF) leader, Atupele Muluzi, has been thoroughly roasted by users on social media following his attacks on Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC) chairperson Gift Trapence for getting an injunction, in April, stopping government from affecting a coronavirus (Covid-19) lockdown.
Atupele wrote the attack on his Facebook account early Friday, just a day after Trapence posted about sending an invoice to the UDF leader to pay up for the convoy purportedly for vice-president used during campaign when he was running mate to immediate past president Peter Mutharika.
Writing on his Facebook account, Atupele rapped Trapence and his colleagues, saying they had put Malawian’s life at risk by going to court against lockdown.
“Now we have a serious upsurge in Covid-19 cases which the lockdown wanted to prevent. This will take away one fundamental right to some which is the right to life. However you have noticed he chooses to play the devil’s advocate all the time, but there is a much bigger cost coming his way,” he said.
He added that when Malawian’s start dying of the virus pandemic, they shall remember the men and women who exposed them to this pandemic.
“I struggle to figure out if this won’t be genocide – the events of the past have shown the disregard for destruction in your endeavor to be relevant. Everyone should be held accountable for their actions and that doesn’t make you an exemption,” he wrote.
The fallen running mate of UDF/DPP alliance further said that new Tonse Alliance government has preached of justice but I think the first thing on the agenda should be election violence followed by Covid-19.
Atupele’s remarks, however, did not go down well with most of his followers on social media.
HRDC vice president Billy Mayaya reminded Atupele that they sought the injunction against a lockdown with the aim of ensuring that the then government had clear mechanisms for social protection of the poor and vulnerable—something the courts agreed.
“The onus was on the then Government to present a counter argument as a basis for vacating the injunction. Please do not embellish your position with wild exaggeration and conjecture,” said Mayaya.
Mayaya, then, brought up the convoy issues, saying Malawians demand accountability for the abuse of power displayed by illegal use of a convoy during a campaign.
“HRDC is awaiting your response on that matter. Don’t divert attention from that matter. We weren’t born yesterday!” he wrote.
UTM Party’s Hellen Chabunya advised Atupele to wake up to the reality that he is misguided.
“How did you propose to institute a lockdown when all funds were being looted for your benefit?” wondered Chabunya.
Another follower, Leo Leornard called Atupele a disgrace and an amateur, adding he [Atupele] had forgotten how the DPP government imported Covid-19 Cases from South Africa, hence the current escalation.
“Those attacks on HRDC leaders are fruitless, tangobwezani ndalamazo munawonongazo pa convoy as if you were the country’s VP. Uwona Nyenkhwe sunati,” he said.
Another follower, Emmanuel Ashadow Mwale said: “If DPP has someone to blame for their downfall, then it’s you [Atupele]. People have not forgotten how your father held this country at ransom; imagine stealing 1.7 billion Kwacha of their money. People don’t want anything associated with his name, including you, sir. Please take a holiday to China.”
However, some followers took a middle position, one of them being Mbene Mwambene who wrote:“I totally agree with you but perhaps these words could’ve come during the campaign. You didn’t say anything then. Also, how realistic would a lockdown be in Malawi? Either ways, there are risks along. If a lockdown is implemented, people will starve. Again without a lockdown in place people will still get infected.”
Interestingly, Atupele’s most feared critic, journalist Idriss Ali Nassah also weighed in, encouraging the UDF leader to keep posting so that he keeps exposing his reasoning to the public.
He wrote: “What Atupele Muluzi is doing in engaging with the public through his Facebook page is very admirable because not too many of our politicians have the guts to face-off with the public in that manner.
“I have seen some people pleading with him to stop with the asinine comments he has been making since last week’s thorough political beating, but I disagree. We live in a democracy and it is Atupele’s democratic right to make a complete fool of himself in public.
“More importantly, it is yet another opportunity for the people of Malawi to see that outside of the privileged upbringing and the polished St Andrews High School English, this man has questionable intelligence and third-rate political judgement.
”Which is why, for all the opportunities he was given, he has ended up being just another whimpering voice on Facebook; a Dickson Kashoti that went to High School.”Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :