Zambian opposition leader Dr. Nevers Sekwila Mumba has said he wants Zambia President Edgar Lungu, now Southern Africa Development Cooperation (SADC) Chairperson on Security and Defense, to take a ‘leading role’ in resolving the political crises in Malawi that threatens peace.
The opposition are protesting that President Peter Mutharika won the May 21 election won by fraud and there have been series of demonsotrations which some have turned violent.
Mumba, who is president of Movement for Multi-party Democracy (MMD), said in quotes reported by Lusaka Times said that the current Malawi political impasse that has arisen after an election dispute could have been avoided if all political players were part and parcel of the election process.
“Our brothers and sisters of Malawi like us are known to be peaceful and loving people. The images and videos coming from Malawi are extremely worrying. I would like to commend the opposition Parties in Malawi for taking their concerns over the disputed Presidential elections to the Constitutional Court. However, we would like to urge all Parties to restrain themselves and their supporters from taking the law into their own hands. We also urge security forces not to be heavy handed in dealing with their own citizens”, Mumba said.
“This impasse wouldn’t have happened if all the political players were part and parcel of the election process. We however commend the courts in Malawi for their land mark ruling last Friday on the ‘right to be heard’ case lodged by the opposition. This will afford the people of Malawi an opportunity to verify the authenticity of the disputed election. It is such actions that diffuse conflict in a nation”, he said.
Mumba said regional bodies like the AU and SADC should take advantage of early warnings to prevent catastrophes from happening on the continent.
He pointed out that any unrest in Malawi affects the security of Zambia too.
“The cessation of hostilities in Malawi therefore is in the interest of our country,” Mumba said.
Mumba has called upon Zambian President Lungu to urgently intervene in the impasse in his capacity as SADC Chairperson of Defense and Security.
“Malawi like Zambia is a member of both the Southern Africa Development Cooperation (SADC) and the Africa Union (AU). We are fortunate that our Republican President Mr. Lungu is the Chairperson of the Security and Defense Wing of SADC. We call upon President Lungu to urgently call for a SADC defence and security meeting to discuss the Malawi Impasse and find peaceful means to resolve it before it escalates”, Mumba said.