Sierra Leone Telegraph: 29 June 2020:
Following the announcement last Saturday of presidential election results in Malawi by the country’s electoral commission, the African Union Commission has published this statement, congratulating the winner – Dr Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera:
“The Chairperson of the African Union Commission, Moussa Faki Mahamat, wishes to congratulate His Excellency Dr Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera upon his election as President of the Republic of Malawi following the successful conduct of fresh presidential election in the Republic of Malawi on 23 June 2020, and the subsequent official election results published on Saturday 27 June 2020 by the Malawi Electoral Commission.
“In particular, the Chairperson extends his profound gratitude to the people of Malawi, for demonstrating their firm commitment to democracy, constitutionalism, rule of law, peace and stability.
“The Chairperson commends the outgoing President His Excellency Peter Mutharika for his stewardship of the Republic of Malawi over the years.
“The Chairperson further commends all the political parties, candidates, and their supporters for their collective effort in promoting a democratic, credible, transparent and peaceful electoral process.
“The Chairperson reaffirms the African Union’s commitment to supporting Malawians in their quest to strengthen democratic and participatory governance and ensure sustainable socio-economic development in the country.”
Dr Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera defeated incumbent Peter Mutharika with 58.57% of the vote in last Tuesday’s poll, the electoral commission announced late on Saturday.
In February, Malawi’s constitutional court annulled Mr Mutharika’s victory in the May 2019 election, citing vote tampering. The country was bitterly divided in the run-up to last week’s election.
It is the second African nation to annul a presidential election over irregularities, after Kenya in 2017.
Following the official result on Saturday, Dr Chakwera (Photo above) said his victory was “a win for democracy and justice,” adding: “My heart is bubbling with joy.”
His supporters took to the streets of the Malawian capital, Lilongwe, sounding car horns and letting off fireworks.
Reporting for BBC News – Will Ross said: “This is a hugely significant moment in Malawi’s political history, and is evidence that neither the courts nor the electorate were prepared to be bullied or influenced by presidential power. Other countries in Africa have had elections annulled – it happened in Kenya a few years ago – but for the opposition candidate to then go on and win a rerun is unprecedented.”
Congratulations to the newly elected president of Malawi, H.E. Dr. Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera, may the God guide you. In Sierra Leone I do not think we are in need of an additional application into our political process. The past election, even though APC party leadership was there for 11 good years, but yet they wanted to hang in there, tried to do everything possible to steal the will of the people, but they were absolutely rejected by the voters. To date where we are right now, they are unhappy.
We have said it yesterday, today, tomorrow and forever that, no more dictatorship in this country. Trust me Bio would never think about being a life chairman for SLPP ever in this country. What happened to Malawi, the same happened here in Sierra Leone 2018 folks! APC leadership does not want give up power to the people!… they even went beyond and started insulting the election observers – like the former Ghanian president, because all the roads were blocked with no way to rig the peoples’ will. I do not understand what the APC and it’s supporters are up to; stop the frustration and focus on the future; join hands together to build the country. Again, congratulations to the newly elected president of Malawi.
When the judiciary is free from the clutches of political interference, you see justice works in its full glory. If anything that is the reason why we keep banging on about the need for our judiciary to dispense justice without fear or favour. When Malawi’s first elections were held on 21st May 2019, the former president Mutharika was sworn in on the 27th May 2019,amidst complaints of widespread irregularities of voter fraud by the opposition parties to the constitutional courts. Thousands took to the streets in June 2019 in protest at what they see as the president trying to hang on to power either by hook or crook. A ruling was made on the 3rd of February 2020, for the election to be re-run. Amidst mounting tension and violence amongst both parties supporters. An appeal was launched by the incumbent president, which the courts rejected.
This story could very well apply to Sierra leone. Last week the elections were held in which the opposition leader, the pastor turned politician in Lazarus Chakwera, was sworn in as Malawi’s president. Apart from the courts decision, his win transcend the tribal politics that the old regime was wedded into. The thing that made this possible is the electoral commission, and the courts. The electoral commission, that counted the votes were able to demonstrate, there were widespread ballot stuffing and voting irregularities in the initial vote. Hence the opposition were able to argue and win their case in the courts.
This is the sort of good practice we need in Sierra leone. As the African union said: “A win for democracy and justice in Malawi. When it comes to our tainted judiciary, Sierra Leone has a lot to learn. I only hope our judges are watching events in Malawi and Kenya, where the courts have played a vital role to nurture the pillars of democracy.
Congratulations to the citizens of Malawi, especially the judiciary branch, for putting their country’s interest first, instead of political demi-gods. This is another prime reminder of the nature of politics in a democratic dispensation — a political party or leader will never be in power forever, so tread cautiously and serve your nation and God faithfully. A few weeks ago the sitting president of Burundi, Pierre Nkurunziza’s, who had rule his country with heavy handedness, imprisoning and killing hundreds of opposition members and dissents, suddenly died of mysterious circumstances, albeit his plans to declare himself SUPREME GUIDE after he would have handed power to his hand picked successor in the coming months.
Like the late Burundian president, we currently have a number of African leaders, who have suddenly immersed themselves in wealth and political power. The following facts stated in the bible book of Ecclesiastes 1:2 “Vanity of vanities, says the Preacher, vanity of vanities! All is vanity”, are completely oblivious to them. The biggest irony of all is that, some of these leaders deceptively claim to be christians, guided by the word of God in dispensing their political will. Judgement day will surely come for such leaders!!
Sierra Leoneans are going to follow the example of the Malawians in the next general elections. It does not matter when the election in Sierra Leone will take place, 2023 or 2024. Be it postponed because of the “rainy season, dry season” or not, does not matter. This was what Will Ross from BBC News said – “neither the courts nor the electorate were prepared to be bullied or influenced by presidential power.” Have they heard the message loud and clear and more importantly, have they started packing their suitcases to “Get SALONE sorted? I hope they do. God bless the Malawians for signaling the message to Sierra Leoneans.
No, no no!, I don’t think so the SLPP led by Bio’s administration would ever makes such a plan, to stay for 11 years, there will be no postponement, surely he will be sworn in after the victorious polls closed, by the power of God. Yes indeed, since the out going dictatorship power APC wasn’t capable to influence the will of the people, no way SLPP can do the same, this is DEMOCRAZY, no more Chinese influences to take this democratic country flip it to a communist China system. Oh my Gush, APCs are the ones that slowly packing their suitcases with shame!, can’t you see, they moving by gradually process?
Oh my God, the chairman for life still hanging there!!, this is chilling bro.
Bio seizes power once ruled for only 3 month, where were you bro? and handed over power to civilian as promised. Tejan Kabba rules for 10 years, initiated peace process after he left office, he never claimed to become life chairman… a chairman without election process. This is the reason I abandoned APC. Trust me since EBK holds the chairmanship, APC would never smell state house period. I believed that you might not like what I’m saying but is the fact.
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