UTM Party spokesman Joseph Chidanti Malunga has described as “crazy allegations” by President Peter Mutharika that vice president Saulos Chilima funded people with albinism to hold demonstrations.
Mutharika said on Monday in Lilongwe when he swore in a commission of enquiry into attacks, abductions and killings of persons with albinism (PWAs).
The President who accused the leadership of Association of People With Albinism in Malawi (Apam) and Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC) of using their members for personal gains, said he had information that Chilima is funding Apam in order to engage in anti-government activities.
Said Mutharika: “Chilima’s wishful dream is to destabilize my government and hopes to come into power through the back door by using people with albinism.”
But Malunga described Mutharika’s allegations as senseless and crazy.
“They have run out of ideas. No one no longer takes the DPP serious these days. ThePpresident once said that he had credible evidence that the UTM president had brought in foreign experts to help rig the elections, up to now, we are yet to have the evidence,” said Malunga.
He said as a Malawian, Chilima, just like any other concerned person, interacts with people with albinism to hear their plight, saying this is not funding.
“Does it mean that anyone who meets the persons with albinism is funding them? This is crazy,” he said.
People with albinism on Saturday staged protests in Lilongwe against Mutharika’s decision to cancel a scheduled meeting last minute and police violently put down the demonstrations by assaulting Apam leaders and arresting some of them.
But Mutharika said Apam leadership turned down his invitation to a roundtable on three occasions to discuss solutions to end the atrocities against PWAs and instead chose to take to the streets.
On HRDC, Mutharika accused its national chairperson Timothy Mtambo of abandoning the PWAs after their abortive march and vigil at Kamuzu Palace last Wednesday.
He said: “Mtambo and [Charles] Kajoloweka abandoned people with albinism. They left them without food and water. People with albinism are human beings and they have to be treated as humans. They should not live with fear in their own country.”
On the commission of the enquiry, the President urged the members to be apolitical to avoid manipulating information to suit interest of politicians.
The swearing-in ceremony marks the beginning of investigations into root causes of killings and abductions of PWAs. The enquiry is also one of Apam’s demands.
The six commissioners sworn-in on Monday are retired Supreme Court judge Robert Chinangwa who is the chairperson, Abgail Dzimadzi, Paramount Chief Kawinga, Rexa Chalera, Malawi Health Equity Network (Mhen)executive director George Jobe and Brenda Vokhiwa-Kapenda as the secretary.
Mutharika appointed eight members to the enquiry on March 5 this year, but two others, the Reverend Timothy Nyasulu and Grace Massa, were not present. However, the President said they will be sworn-in at a later date.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :