President Peter Mutharika and his Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) plans to rig 2019 elections can be manifested in the composition of appointed Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) commissioners.
On 6th June, Mutharika appointed 8-man team of commissioners to oversee the electoral affairs at MEC.
However, the appointment has raised eyebrows following a controversial appointment of current State-owned Malawi Broadcasting Corporation (MBC) Chairperson Moffat Banda as one of commissioners.
That aside, six of the appointed commissioners are from Lhomwe belt, where Mutharika comes from, a clearly indication of how far he is willing to go just to win the next elections by strategically positioning his tribesmen into crucial posts that will help determine his fate come 2019.
Malawi Punch ran a background check on the appointed commissioners in consideration to their tribe of origin, and six of them have been found to be Lhomwes.
Consider this, Jean Mathanga is already DPP die hard and Mulhako wa Alhomwe’s influential member and comes from Thyolo district, Malawi Broadcasting Corporation (MBC) Board Chair Moffat Banda comes from Chiradzulu district same is Linda Kunje despite being of Peoples Party (PP).
Other Mulhako faces in the team are Evelyn Mtafu who hails from Mulanje district and Reverend
Killion Mgawi who is from Phalombe district.
Despite appointing tribesmen as commissioners, Mutharika made sure that opposition parties, except DPP ally’s- United Democratic Front (UDF) – were reduced in numbers with MCP and PP having one commissioner each although having more Parliamentarians than UDF.
Seal of Approval
Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) has set Friday for the swearing in of the Democratic commissioners, which will automatically give the Mulhako-dominated commissioners a seal of approval to proceed in strategizing on how to help their leader retains reigns of powers.
According MEC, the swearing in ceremony will be presided over by Chief Justice Andrew Nyirenda, Sc at Capital Hotel in Lilongwe.
After the swearing in, the Commissioners will in subsequently undergo an induction process which will include a three days training in Harare, Zimbabwe- surely to learn rigging tactics from Peter Mutharika’s counterpart comrade Robert Mugabe.
Recently, People’s Party (PP) Publicity Secretary Kenneth Msonda questioned the composition of the new commissioners, saying it leaves alot to be desired.
Concurring with Msonda, a Political scientist at Chancellor College of the University Of Malawi Joseph Chunga said that DPP is planning to rig 2019 polls.
“The President could have considered names from other political parties. The appointment has already raised eyebrows as some people think the DPP is dominating the commission in order to rig the 2019 elections,” said Chunga.