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Monday, 11 February 2019 11:35

DPP advises religious leaders against siding with political parties ahead of the 2019 polls

Written by  Rose Mahorya and Synet Chitete
MEC Official going through Njikho's nomination papers MEC Official going through Njikho's nomination papers pic by Rose Marhoya

Mzuzu, February 11, 2019: The Ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) has advised religious leaders in the country against taking sides with political parties elections to ensure fair playing ground for aspiring candidates ahead of the 2019 Tripartite Elections.

DPP Deputy Director of Operations, Joe Nyirongo made the call in Mzuzu Wednesday soon after the party’s aspiring candidates for 2019 parliamentary and local government elections submitted their nomination papers at Mzuzu City Civic Offices.

Nyirongo said most religious leaders are fond of taking sides with particular parties a development which he said has potential to incite political violence.

“During the forthcoming elections, my appeal to religious leaders is that they should not take sides as you command a large following which has different political affiliations.

“The moment you display prejudice, you will incite people to fight each other,” said Nyirongo.

He said DPP is a peace loving party and that it will do everything possible to prevent violence that may lead to breech of peace.

After presenting his parliamentary nomination papers, DPP Regional Governor for the north, Kenneth Sanga who is also the party’s aspiring parliamentary candidate for Mzuzu City concurred with Nyirongo and pledged that the party will concentrate on issue based campaign to ensure that DPP is voted into power.

Some minutes before DPP aspirants submitted their papers, Mzuzu City Council Mayor, William Mkandawire also submitted his nomination papers to declare interest for position of Member of Parliament for the city on an independent ticket.

On Tuesday, the incumbent Member of Parliament (MP) for Mzuzu City, Lenard Njikho who is aspiring candidate for Mzuzu City presented nomination papers on United Transformation Movement (UTM) ticket.

Speaking after presenting his papers, Njikho who is also UTM Northern Region Governor, said he was happy to have successfully presented his nomination papers.

“Let me thank the people of Mzuzu for having trust in me and asking me to represent and save them for the next coming five years as their MP.

“I am very pleased to inform these people that my nomination papers have been accepted by Malawi Electoral Commission and I am contesting as their MP under UTM ticket,” said Njikho.

He urged the party’s followers to refrain from perpetrating any form of violence that may dent the image of the party and impact negatively on the electoral process.