Zamba and President Chakwera
Secretary to the President and Cabinet (SPC) Colleen Zamba has warned individuals and organisations in the country against unlawful use of the protected flag, names and colours of Malawi, saying those involved will be prosecuted.
Zamba has released a statement today saying her office has noted that some individuals and organisations have been using protected emblems, colours and names of Malawi.
The SPC has reminded people in the country that it is an offence under Section 5 of the Protected Flag, Emblems and Names to use, display or permit to be displayed, manufacture, sell, offer for sale, import or produce protected emblems without written permission of the Minister responsible for t6he administration of the Act.
“The Office of the President and Cabinet, is therefore, calling upon individuals, organisations or otherwise who are using, displaying manufacturing, selling, offering for sale, importing or producing the protected emblems, colours, names and likeness without written permission of the Minister to desist from the malpractice,” reads part of the statement.
Zamba adds in the statement that the law will apply to any individual or organisation who shall contravene the act.
Under the act, “protected emblem” means the National Flag, the Armorial Ensigns, the Public Seal or any recognizable part of a protected emblem.
“Protected likeness” means any photograph, drawing, painting, sculpture or other pictorial or visual representation of the person holding the office of the president of Malawi.
“Protected name” means the national name of Malawi, and the word “President”, the names, styles or titles of the President as well as the words “Unity and Freedom”, “National”, “Republic” and “University”.
On the Government Facebook Page where Zamba’s statement has been posted, Malawians have criticized the Lazarus Chakwera administration for attempting to limit the freedoms of Malawians using a law that was enacted in 1967 and is considered repressive.
One person wrote: “So I have to write to some government office to get permission to display my flag? Did I hear that right or not?”
Another commenter said: “Out of all challenges the country is facing, some individuals considered this a priority of the voters. People should be Happy with and enjoy their national colours without fear..Repeal that oppressive law.. This government is confused when it comes to priorities of the voters who braved harsh weather and long queues to usher it into power.”
Others noted that people show pride and patriotism for the country using the Malawi national colours.
“This is very unnecessary considering the majority of the people/citizens who use the said materials literally use them for PRIDE, NATIONALITY EXPRESSION and a sense of BELONGING among other reasons,” a commenter said.
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