Despite a call by Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) urging chiefs in the country to be apolitical during the campaign period, a chief in Mangochi District is campaigning for President Peter Mutharika.
This was evidenced on Sunday last week when Group Village Head (GVH) Likoloma from Traditional Authority (T/A) Makanjira in the district endorsed Peter Mutharika during the whistle-stop, the then Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, Kondwani Nankhumwa conducted at his headquarters.
During his visit in the area to elevate Sub-Traditional Authority Lulanga to full T/A, the minister made a stop-over at Likoloma’s headquarters to drum up support for the governing Democratic Progressive Party (DPP).
But the chief, instead of becoming apolitical, he took the microphone and started canvassing more support for Mutharika, saying he is the only leader who has “sharp acumen” to transform the country to enviable levels.
“Let me urge you all my subjects to vote for Arthur Peter Mutharika during the May 21 2019 Tripartite Elections because the man has proved to be the perfect leader who is expected to take Malawi to another level if given another fresh five-year term,’’ said Likoloma while in a DPP regalia.
While assuring the minister that Mutharika and all the candidates affiliated to DPP will sweep more votes in the area, Likoloma asked the president to consider bringing electricity in the area including the switch-on of the lights whose works were already done.
In his remarks, Nankhumwa described the chief’s stance as a rare occurrence worth emulating by others.
“I have liked the chief’s sentiments. This has given us hope to ooze more confidence of taking more votes here,’’ said the minister while assuring that the pleas made by the chiefs will be answered.
Meanwhile, the Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace (CCJP) in Mangochi Diocese has strongly condemned the chief for his conduct, saying his behaviour compromises chiefs’ neutrality when discharging their duties and is also against the ethics and the MEC code of conduct of chiefs.
“How will they discharge their duties if opposition political candidates being disendorsed today win the elections? It is very unfortunate that some traditional leaders have stooped so low to conduct themselves as if they were party constituency governors,” reacted CCJP Diocesan Secretary Bruno Banda.