The Embassy of the United States of America in Malawi has condemned recent politically motivated acts of violence ahead of the May 21 Tripartite elections.
Thd opposition political parties, notably Malawi Congress Party (MCP) and UTM, have accused the governing Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) of unleashing the rising terror through its youth cadets. But DPP has denied that its members were unleashing violence, claiming the perpetrators were masquerading as DPP youth cadets.
In the statement made available to Nyasa Times, US Ambassador of the United States to Malawi, Virginia Palmer said United States is concerned by incidents of political violence in the lead up to Malawi’s May 2019 elections.
“We call upon all political party leaders and citizens to commit to non-violence during the electoral process,” Palmer said.
The US embassy applauded recent statements by political leaders decrying violence, including the targeting of women, and President Peter Mutharika’s directive to the Malawi Police Service to prevent violence and bring those responsible for violence to justice.
“Political violence damages the credibility of Malawi’s electoral process and undermines citizen confidence in the political system,” reads the statement in part.
The Us embassy, therefore, call upon the Malawi Police Services to “swiftly” investigate and prosecute all acts of violence in a non-partisan manner.
“We encourage the public to report any cases of violence to the police to ensure violence does not go unpunished. We encourage MPS senior leadership to support officers doing the hard work of maintaining peace in the communities and urge political leaders to remove those responsible for encouraging violence from positions of responsibility.”
US said it stand with all Malawians in calling for a free, fair and violence-free election.
MPS has come under fire, especially from opposition parties, civil society organisations and Malawi Law Society, for turning a blind eye to cases of political violence notably against the opposition sympathisers.