The Young Politicians Union (YPU) in Zomba has accused the organizers of the January 17 demonstrations of not giving dialogue a chance.
The group has since urged the Consumers Association of Malawi (CAMA) to engage government in dialogue than holding demonstrations on 17th January, cautioning Cama that it risks weakening its role and stamina if it goes ahead with demonstrations and criminals hijack the protest to loot businesses. Opposition leaders could also take advantage to advance their political interests.
“The organizers of the January 17 demonstrations should exhaust all angles of dialogue with government rather than going to the streets,” YPU publicity secretary Benson Ndazipere Phiri told Nyasa Times.
“We do have fresh memories of the 20th July demonstrations during the Bingu administration and we do not want to experience the same this time around. The problem is that the leaders of the protests leave it to the youth whenever things get tough during the demonstrations resulting in loss of life for the youth and looting of people’s property,” he said.
YPU’s research and documentation officer Wickness Nakanga said: “These rights activists only walk with the protesters for a few moments and then disappear in their vehicles. Trouble brews when teargas is thrown towards the protesters which causes panic and forces people into looting property.”
The Zomba group [‘s stand comes after Youth Development Forum (YDF), a group which comprises young achievers from different businesses, political parties and the academia, also spoke against the demonstrations.
The group says the youth, being 60 percent of the population, are also hit by the economic woes; hence, the call for a consultative meeting with the Ministry of Youth and Sports Development to discuss the issues.
The organizers are demanding the reversal of the floatation of the Kwacha, a stop on foreign and local travel by the president and her deputy Khumbo Kachali, declaration of assets by the Malawi leader and the sale of the presidential jet, among others.
Cama executive director John Kapito has reiterated that government has failed to manage the economy after the devaluation.
“You cannot say you are not part of the race when you are holding the baton. We are saying the floatation of the currency, coupled with devaluation, was wrongly sequenced and it is what created challenges for Malawians,” he said.
Meanwhile, CAMA claims it has followed all the set procedures by informing all relevant authorities and warned those planning to counter the demonstrations by using media houses, that such behavior causes violence.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :