Politics

Malawi Rocked by Angry Protests over Disputed Elections

Police said shops had been ransacked and two police officers injured by protesters throwing rocks in Lilongwe.

The leader of Malawi’s United Transformation Movement (UTM), Saulos Chilima, said protests that rocked the country on Thursday are just “warm-ups”, vowing that there will be more unless Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) chairperson Jane Ansah steps down, Maravi Post reports.

This follows police and protesters clashing in three cities in Malawi on Thursday during countrywide demonstrations over the disputed result of last month’s presidential election.

In the biggest rallies since the vote count was announced, police used teargas to disperse protesters who tore down billboards of re-elected President Peter Mutharika.

Thousands of protesters gathered in the capital Lilongwe, in the commercial centre Blantyre and in the third city of Mzuzu at protests that called for the head of the Malawi Electoral Commission to resign.

In Blantyre, marchers were stopped by police using tear gas as they approached the commission’s headquarters, according to AFP reporters.

In Lilongwe, protestors included opposition leaders Lazarus Chakwera of the Malawi Congress Party (MCP) as well as Chilima.

“Malawians are very angry with the manner in which the management of the election results were conducted and we want everyone involved in the injustice to resign and get out,” Chakwera said.

Chakwera alleges he was robbed of victory in the May 21 ballot, which an official count showed he lost by just 159,000 votes.

Police said shops had been ransacked and two police officers injured by protesters throwing rocks in Lilongwe.

“We continue to deploy police officers both on foot and vehicle patrols, in all strategic places in towns, cities and rural areas,” police said in a statement.

The election was marred by allegations of fraud, including that many results sheets were altered using correction fluid.

The two main opposition parties have challenged the vote outcome in court, with judges due to rule on Friday on whether or not to dismiss the case, as requested by Mutharika.

“A significant section of Malawi society is disgruntled and does not want the current government. It’s a divided country,” Malawian political scientist Michael Jana, who teaches at the University of Witwatersrand, told AFP.

On Wednesday, protesters blocked the main route into Lilongwe as Mutharika was due to arrive from Blantyre, forcing him to use another road.

 

(The Citizen)

11 Comments

  1. Herv Rena

    Achimwene,after 2 months ,where were you.We recommend a 50 +1 electoral system.

  2. yellew fuckers

    imwe achimwene ukushishita wat makes u think at your presido can resign, instade of protesting u are stealing from the shops. shop owners are they the ones.who announces the elections.,,

  3. E M

    u’re destroying yo own things don’t forget that u’re poor look at our development countries friends the way the are protesting

  4. ben

    Your anger must be controlled. Honestly why should you attack and break shops then steal? Most effective protests should win hearts of the police and military officials.Look at Zimbabwe or N.Sudan.Violence belongs to demons.

  5. wind breaker

    Guys Malawi I have never seen foolish people like you
    This is poverty now .stop hiding your poverty in election
    Were have you ever seen a protest like that
    Be serious achimwene

  6. Mike

    If you are aZambian citizen don’t comment much because you are weak people, who don’t even have vision.

    • Phiri Darius

      We are not weak as in your thinking, we love our country and our peace.
      What is it that you have in Malawi which makes you strong?? Unless you tell me that poverty which is in the highest order makes u strong!
      Sober up u have nothing to defend yourself with, all l can advise all good well wishing Malawi to unit and do the right things and not weaken more a poor conntry like Malawi.
      Watch out the future of your country is in your hands.
      Wise Zambian

  7. FARIDA JOHN

    DESTROYING STORES IS FOOLISHNESS. SMART PEOPLE DO QUIETLY DEMONSTRATIONS OR ATTACH GOVERNMENT DIRECTLY NOT THEIR FELLOW CITIZEN TRYING TO MAKE A LIVING. SHAME ON MALAWIANS! STEALING AND DESTROYING STORES IN NOT A SOLUTION.

  8. Madiba

    It is sad that even as people are protesting about the election results there is no unity. This battle can easily be won if protestors are united.

    The business community you are robbing are part of the aggrieved citizens. You are dividing the much needed united front to achieve the intended results. Your conduct is actually making people u-turn and sooner than later, the battle will be lost.

    Whatever you do Malawians know that your country is rich but poorly managed thus the need to fight for justice and restore sanity which is needed now than ever before. Else Malawi will continue to be the poorest Nation on earth.

    Wake up achimwenes!!!!

  9. Phiri Darius

    We are not weak as in your thinking, we love our country and our peace and that’s our Vision for our better Zambia.
    What is it that you have in Malawi which makes you strong?? Unless you tell me that poverty which is in the highest order makes u strong!
    Sober up u have nothing to defend yourself with, all l can advise all good well wishing Malawi to unit and do the right things and not weaken more a poor conntry like Malawi.
    Watch out the future of your country is in your hands.
    Wise Zambian

  10. Tionge

    In every competition there is always one winner, it’s sad that some leaders are disputing presidential elections results and accepting the same on parliamentary and LGE. Let Chakwera and Chilima swallow their pride and allow the country to move forward. They lost it squarely.

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