Written by Patseni Mauka
First things first. I am writing this article in my personal capacity. I am not writing on behalf of my church, family, concubines, friends or the party that I support. In my previous article, I documented the impunity that DPP cadets going by the strange and meaningless name Ana a Dad enjoy in different aspects of our society. Since I published that article, DPP thugs have carried out more terrorist acts.
Few months ago, Malawians saw a video of a Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) cadet, Isaac Osman, also known as Ntopwa One, suffocating a young man just for wearing opposition Malawi Congress Party (MCP) regalia . Until now, the police have not arrested him despite the fact that the video is still circulating on social media.
The DPP terrorists also went to Kawale police station to demand release of their friend. They harassed police officers and got away with it. Everyone was shocked to see the video on social media. If DPP cadets can harass police officers, no one is safe. Not even the police can protect us from these merciless ruffians.
Just last week we saw pictures of innocent Malawians covered in blood with faces panel beaten beyond recognition. The crime that these people committed is belonging to a party different from the roughnecks. DPP is trying to force every one to be it’s supporter. This is because DPP knows it’s popularity is very low, it can’t win elections without intimidating voters.
DPP’s aim is to make sure other political party campaigns do not reach all areas in the country. This is against the right to freedom of information during elections and is a hindrance to a free political choice. When voters are targeted with violence around elections, the consequences may be that citizens refrain from voting, or vote for a certain political party out of fear, rather than as a free choice.
The fact that DPP acts of terror are escalating shows that authorities responsible for keeping peace in the country are fast asleep or deliberately turning a blind eye. But, bonafide Malawian citizens who are suffering from these evils acts and those who are walking the streets scared of DPP terrorists need immediate intervention and advice on precautions to take against terror. I volunteer to offer some advice.
Let me start with my personal experience with bullies. When I was young, I used to be bullied because my school mates had bigger bodies than me. Every time there was a small disagreement, the bullies would threaten to beat me up. One day, a bully wanted to get a piece of my matowo wild fruit and ordered me to give him. I refused and as usual he threatened to beat me up. Tired of being threatened, I told him I would beat him back. You should have seen his face full of shock and anger.
He launched a blow at me. I ducked and threw mine which landed on his forehead. I gave him a kick and like a bag of maize, he fell on the ground. Just when I was about to finish him off, friends intervened. That was the end of the fight. Every one was surprised that little Patseni could fight. That was how I earned respect and stopped the threats.
The first thing to do when faced with acts of terror is to be prepared to defend yourself. Do not let yourself be a statistic of political violence. Life is precious. You only live once. If you die, you are gone forever and in Malawi, your killers will never face justice. Your death will be an everlasting suffering for your family. Be prepared and fight back if necessary to defend yourself. Always move in groups in order to help each other fight these thugs.
Don’t count on the police to protect you. Don’t count on President Mutharika to defend you, he is the master-minder of the violence. He appointed Nicholas Dausi and Charles Mchacha to prevent the police from acting against DPP thugs. Bring the fight to DPP and show them that we can’t just watch them beating us up. We can’t just be crying on social media. We have to do something to stop these thugs.
Having said that, experts recommend that when electoral violence takes place, adequate support is vital for the development of a well functioning democratic society and for durable peace. Strategies to prevent and manage electoral violence should focus on the perpetrators of violence as well as the perspectives of the victims of such violence.
It is recommended that a united approach to support the victims of violence is important so that those affected can cope with the consequences of violence. Strategies directed towards the victims of electoral violence can also prevent violence from negatively affecting the attitudes towards democratic politics, a necessary condition for sustainable peace. Political parties, the Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC), religious organisations, civil society and traditional authorities should take a lead in preventing violence.
Disclaimer: Views expressed in this article are not necessarily the views of the Publisher or the Editor of Maravi Post