Post-election violence threatens Malawi’s peace

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The post-election protests by opposition leaders, civil rights activist and political operatives neighboring Malawi is threatening the peace of one of the most nonviolent nations on the continent.

Malawi went to General Elections on May 21 2019 with a total of ten Presidential candidates nominated to contest the disputed  elections.

 Incumbent President Peter Mutharika of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) was ran for a second term in office and emerged victorious in a controversially conducted elections. His  immediate past  Vice-President Saulos Chilima also contested under the United Transformation Movement (UTM) as it’s  candidate, having left the DPP in 2018. The other candidates include Lazarus Chakwera  Malawi Congress Party the main Opposition leader who came second in the Polls, Atupele Muluzi  of the United Democratic Front , the son of Former President Bakili Muluzi .

Former president Joyce Banda People’s Party had originally planned to run for the presidency, but withdrew her candidacy two months before the election; she later endorsed opposition candidate Lazarus Chakwera.  A new entrant Ras Chikomeni Chirwa was disqualified due to lack of funds and failing to collect enough signatures.

After the announcement of results, there has been constant demonstrations in Malawi. 

Thousands of opposition supporters have been demonstrating and organised a mass protest in the capital, Lilongwe,  on June 21,  demanding the immediate resignation of Malawi Electoral Commission chairperson Jane Ansah.

Some police officers were severely injured after being beaten up minutes after an armoured vehicle threatened the protesters at Capital Hill.

Police said shops had been ransacked and two police officers injured by protesters throwing rocks in Lilongwe.

In Blantyre, marchers were stopped by police using tear gas as they approached the commission’s headquarters, according to AFP reporters.

In Lilongwe, protestors included opposition leaders Lazarus Chakwera of the Malawi Congress Party (MCP) and Saulos Chilima of the United Transformation Movement (UTM) 

ByPress time, several videos had gone viral.showing the violence on the streets as Police confronts the protesters who are demanding the resignation of President Mutharika

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Start: 2019-07-01 End: 2019-07-31