Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC) has said it will proceed with plans to conduct demonstrations at Kamuzu Palace tomorrow.
The coalition said this at a press conference in Lilongwe today following Lilongwe City Council’s stance that the group cannot hold demonstrations at the palace because it is a protected area.
Speaking at the presser, HRDC Chairperson Timothy Mtambo said Malawians should take note that HRDC will proceed with the plan to present a petition at Kamuzu Palace.
According to the coalition’s Chairperson, they will march from Lilongwe Community Ground to Kamuzu Palace where they will present their petition in accordance to section 38 of the Republic of Malawi Constitution as read with section 103 of the police Act which gives people rights to parade within 100 meters from the precincts of the State House.
Mtambo then urged Malawians to maintain peace during the demonstrations and refrain from violence and vandalism.
He added that the general public should be aware that the dialogue meeting they had with former President Bakili Muluzi has not affected their stand on the calls for Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) chairperson Jane Ansah to resign.
“We are commending the former president Bakili Muluzi for the dialogue, we will continue to discuss with different stakeholders in an accountable manner. We never accept dialogue where people discuss secrets, we are not ready to sell the noble cause and betray Malawians. It will be stupid of us that we abuse the opportunity we have,” he explained.
Mtambo said the coalition now wants the Public Appointment Committee of Parliament to intervene on the issue of Ansah since the committee is also involved in the appointment of MEC Commissioners.
He however condemned Malawi Human Rights Commission (HRC) for asking HRDC to stop demonstrations saying MHRC is being used by the Democratic Progressive Party.
During the press briefing, HRDC also gave First Lady Gertrude Mutharika seven days to reimburse the K30 million she has used to travel to the United Kingdom for her son’s graduation.