EAM Engages Chiefs, Clergy in Electoral Reforms
The Evangelical Association of Malawi (EAM) has challenged chiefs and religious leaders to engage government to complete the process of electoral law reforms before the next tripartite elections.
EAM Governance and Advocacy Officer Mr. Matchona Phiri speaking on Wednesday during the electoral reforms consultative meeting in Mulanje said it should be known that some gaps in the current electoral legislation have been giving room for electoral violence.
He said it is therefore important that chiefs and religious leaders who command large following should apply necessary pressure to the Ministry of Justice, the legislature and the president so that electoral reforms process is completed.
“There is need for harmonization of electoral laws and check inconsistences in Presidential and Parliamentary Elections and Local Government Acts so that both laws should speak to each other,” said Phiri.
Reverend Witness Mthyola of Word Alive Ministries International in Mulanje told Zodiak Online that it is important that religious leaders are oriented on what these electoral reforms are before lobbying of speedy implementation of the process.
“As church ministers, we cannot ignore what is happening in the country and everything that affects the nation does not spare the church and as such religious leaders should be part and parcel of these electoral reforms processes,” said Reverend Mthyola.
On her part, Senior Chief Chikumbu said it is important that EAM has taken on board chiefs in this electoral reform’s advocacy.
“Sometimes as chiefs we have challenges to tell our subjects important issues like these electoral laws because we are also ignorant of them and this meeting has enlightened us the current laws and areas to be amended,” said Senior Chief Chikumbu.
The meeting which attracted six chiefs and thirty pastors was part of a three-year project dubbed “Enhancing church engagement in peace building, electoral governance and decentralization” which EAM is implementing in Mulanje, Karonga and Lilongwe with funding from a German organization called Bread of the World.