Malawians living in Mzuzu have blasted the Public Affairs Committee (PAC) for coming up with a half-baked report that claims that about 64 percent of Malawians are not interested in changing this country’s political system from a unitary state to a federal state.
In random interviews this publication conducted across the city on Friday, people blamed PAC for not consulting Malawians before coming up with the report.
They maintained that the report does not reflect the real views of people especially those from the northern region.
They further alleged that the report has been influenced by kickbacks some top PAC officials have been receiving from government.
Apparently, most of the residents said they have lost trust in the interfaith organisation that claims to be promoting human dignity through advocacy and conflict transformation.
“That is a vague report. To most of us we believe PAC is just a waste of time because it is a grouping of hypocrites who are not representing Malawians but their bellies,” fumed Austin Mbekeyani.
Another resident, Khumbo Soko said: “Stupid PAC and its officials, they are not representing our views. Whom did they ask before coming up with their report? That report has been cooked within themselves. Most of us are not in that fake 64 percent.”
The residents have since urged advocates to prioritise a referendum saying groups like PAC are only government agents who are deliberately doing some delaying tactics to weaken the move.
The Forum for the Advancement of Federalism and Rural Development in Malawi has also trashed PAC for cooking up the report.
According to chairman of the forum, Dr Binah Shaba, the report lacks basic clarification on how PAC managed to come to the conclusion that most Malawians are not interested in federalism. He thus assumed that the report has been influenced by government.
“PAC is a spent force in as far as representing the voiceless Malawians is concerned. They never did what people told them to do; the committee was no longer dealing with what people want.
“It is unfortunate that the committee has now joined government in compromising things in this country. Malawians wants federalism and not the current unitary state which has left most of us in extreme poverty,” said Shaba.
He however maintained that his grouping will continue fighting for the adoption of federalism in the country until it will be adopted.
“We will wait for a referendum on the matter. We believe that way only can we see the true picture and not what PAC has faked here,” he added.
On the other hand, PAC through Father Peter Mlomole said observed that concerns that motivated calls for the adoption of federalism and proposed solutions can be sorted out even in the current unitary system hence no need to have a federal state.
“What is needed is political will and leadership that can be more concerned with the country’s problems and not federalism. In fact government cannot manage the process of transition because it is too pricey,” said Mlomole.
Meanwhile, the Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace (CCJP) has echoed the views expressed in PAC’s report saying they truly reflect the views of Malawians.