LILONGWE, MaraviPost: Acting in accordance with the provisions in the Constitution of the Republic of Malawi and the Human Rights Commission Act, government has ushered in new members of the Malawi Human Rights Commission (MHRC).
Appointed by His Excellency, the State President Professor Arthur Peter Mutharika, the 7th Cohort of members of the Commission was sworn in at an event graced by the Minister of Justice and Constitutional Affairs Honourable Bright Msaka SC at Bingu International Conference Centre in Lilongwe.
The swearing in of the new commissioners follows a protracted legal challenge filed by some sections of civil society, who argued that the selection process was flawed.
The new team comprises Dr. Sunduzwayo Madise, Baldwin Chiyamwaka, Dr. Bertha Sefu, Reverend Patrick Semphere, Scarder Louis, Law Commissioner Rosemary Kumitsonyo Kanyuka, Boniface Massah, Stella Twea and Ombudsman Martha Chizuma.
Addressing the nine new members of the Commission, Msaka said the swearing in ceremony is a clear demonstration of Government’s commitment to pursue the objective of promoting and protecting human rights for the people of Malawi.
The Minister urged the commissioners to stick to the law when discharging their duties, and to also ensure that they serve the interest of the general public.
“Human rights belong to everyone and not just a vocal minority, and every time the vocal minority tramples upon the rights of the silent majority, the Commission must ensure that its voice of condemnations is heard,” the Minister said.
The Minister pointed out that human rights abuses are perpetrated across all sections of society, by the state actors, non-state actors and individuals.
Unfortunately, he said, people have been preoccupied by abuse by state actors, paying a blind eye to the abuse by non-state actors and individuals.
The Minister bemoaned the growing cancer of mob justice, which is flaming up anger and hatred amongst the people and ushering in some level of lawlessness.
Msaka said the Commission should take lead in informing the people that everyone, regardless of the nature of the crime alleged to have been committed, is entitled to a fair trial. Furthermore, the Minister called on the Commission to design new mechanisms to ensure that human rights information is available and provided to all throughout the entire length and breadth of Malaw