Monday, March 31, 2014

Malawi: MEC and police service geared up to deliver free and fair elections

Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) together with the Malawi Police Service (MPS) have geared up to deliver a credible election this year. MEC Commissioner Ambassador, Rev Emmanuel Chinkwita-Phiri made the remarks Friday at Lilongwe Police Training Centre during Anti-Violence meeting for Multiparty Liaison Committees (MPLCs) organised by the MPS in Lilongwe. He said the commission appreciates the role the MPS was playing in ensuring that this year’s elections are held in a peaceful and secure environment to all players.

Chinkwita-Phiri commended MPS for the job well done both during registration and nomination processes as there were no reports of violence and intimidation because of adequate security that MPS provided. “I urge the police to maintain the track during this campaign period. Election ahead, offers an opportunity for the MPS to prove to the nation and all stakeholders that it is and it will remain a professional and nonpartisan body,” said Chinkwita-Phiri. He said holding of peaceful elections is not the responsibility of only Police but all stakeholders that include political candidates, traditional leaders and the electorate among other stakeholders.

“If all of the stakeholders can play their rightful roles, we will confidently be on a safe course to hold a free, fair and peaceful election on May 20 this year,” he said. He said political party leaders and candidates also have a key in ensuring that election are held a free and fair environment, in some cases it is what has been said during campaign meetings that sparks violence or what is done clandestinely. “I urge every one of us to practice clean politics. People will vote for you because of your manifesto and what you are promising to do for them when voted into office,” said Chinkwita-Phiri.

Commissioner of Police for Central Region, Demster Chigwenembe said hate speeches are a recipe to political violence and politicians have to desist from such speeches that would incite violence. He said political parties should instead preach peace. He said the recent sad and unfortunate incident that happened in Thyolo where two lives were lost and property should give political parties a lesson in the country. “As police we are ready to work with everyone to make sure that there is no violence during political meetings. We will provide all the necessary security,” said Chigwenembe. This year’s campaign period is under the theme, ‘clean campaign; say no to violence.

Source: Mana Online

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