LILONGWE Malawi (Xinhua) --
The United Nations (UN) in Malawi has expressed
concern over incidences of violence taking place in the country
12 months ahead of elections in May 2019.
In a statement
signed by UN Resident Coordinator in Malawi, Maria Jose Torres,
released Wednesday, the UN said it is much concerned that the
incidences are taking place at the beginning of the electoral
The statement cites
the assault of a local media photo journalist at the country’s
National Assembly on Friday, May 4, while President Peter
Mutharika was delivering State of the Nation Address to mark the
opening of the country’s 2018/19 national budget session.
The UN has asked
authorities to investigate and, where relevant, prosecute the
perpetrators including those who threatened and intimidated two
members of parliament during the opening of the budget meeting
“The UN underlines
the importance of full respect for the rights to freedom of
expression, association, peaceful assembly and political
participation including for women,” read the statement.
It also reminded the
authorities in the country that promotion of conditions for
credible, free and fair elections in 2019 requires a climate of
tolerance and respect for the rule of law that enables citizens’
participation and equal representation, including for women.
The UN statement
comes after President Mutharika and his deputy, Saulos Chilima,
in separate statements joined the country’s Media Institute for
Southern Africa (MISA-Malawi) in condemning the acts of
apologized to the media fraternity in the country over the
weekend through Minister of Information and Communications
Technology, who is also Malawi government spokesperson, Nicholas
A group of youth
clad in black suits and believed to be supporters of the ruling
Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) stirred the violence at the
Parliament building on Friday barring two DPP parliamentarians
from entering the chamber and beating up the photo journalist
for filming the ordeal.
The unruly youth
barred the two legislators apparently for their alleged support
to the movement that is pushing for the presidency of the Vice
President Chilima in 2019 polls.
COMESA and EU sign deal to
enhance Zambia-Malawi trade
LUSAKA Zambia (Xinhua) --
Africa’s biggest trading bloc, COMESA, has signed
a financing agreement with the European Union (EU) aimed at
enhancing trade facilitation between Zambia and Malawi, a
state-run news agency reported on Wednesday.
The four-year 13.5
million euros agreement, signed in eastern Zambia’s Chipata
town, was meant to contribute to infrastructure development,
improved trade, private sector development, among others at
border entries of the two countries, according to the Zambia
News and Information Service.
the head of the EU delegation in Zambia, said at the signing
ceremony that the funds were part of a total envelop of 85
million euros allocated to the Common Market for Eastern and
Southern Africa (COMESA) for development programs in Zambia and
Malawi, which also includes good governance and the fight
against climate change.
Sindiso Ngwenya, the
Secretary-General of COMESA said cross border innovation plays a
critical role in trade integration in the region but noted that
there was need for governments to engage cross-border traders in
the decision-making process for smooth implementation of