Malawi Plans Second Demo on August 17

Rights groups in
Malawi, who on July 20
staged demonstrations that
left 19 dead after police
opened fire, insist August 17 is
the deadline for the government to act on their tough petition.

Leaders of the civil society
told a presser plans to hold a
second demo on this date remained intact.

“If nothing happens, the nation will hear
from us,” said Robert
Mkwezalamba, general
secretary of the Malawi
Congress of Trade Unions
(MCTU).

“We sent a petition to the
president with our suggested solutions and we expect a
response. It was a clear
petition and we will wait
until August 17,” Mkwezalamba, who chaired
the meeting, was quoted by
the Daily Times as saying.

Other leaders at the presser
were Gift Trapence, director of
the Centre for the Development of the People
(CEDEP), which represents gays, prisoners and prostitutes, Peter Chinoko of
the Catholic Commission for
Peace and Justice, and Rafiq Hajat, director of the think
tank Institute for Policy
Interaction.

The July 20 demonstrations
were staged to bring
attention to the high cost of living and the leadership style
of Pres Bingu wa Mutharika
which Malawians say is autocratic, reminiscent of the dictatorial regime of Dr.
Kamuzu Banda, Malawi’s founding president, who
clung to power for three
decades. @maravipost

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