Opposition Malawi Congress party (MCP) Dr. Lazarus Chakwera has condemned the acts of violence staged by the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) during the Gonapamuhanya celebrations in Rumphi on Saturday.

It is said that youth cadets of the ruling DPP on Saturday blocked Chakwera and his entourage from attending the Gonapamunya ceremony. The youth cadets clad in party regalia stoned Chakwera’s vehicle.

The opposition leader had to be whisked away from the fracas using another vehicle Tumbuka Paramount Chief, Chikulamayembe sent.

Writing on his official facebook page, Chakwera expressed sadness over the terror attack organized by the DPP.

“When my entourage reached Bolero, we were ambushed by a violent mob of youth, a good number of whom were clad in Democratic Progressive Party branded paraphernalia. These mercenaries took it upon themselves not only to form a human shield to block us from proceeding to the venue of the function, but to also shower us with stones that left one of the glasses of my vehicle in pieces. When my wife and I got out of the car to confront them in person in Chitumbuka, it was apparent from their lack of fluency that they were not from the area, but they stated that they were trucked in with instructions “from above” to attack me and keep me from attending the function.

“Had it not been for the hosting Paramount Chief dispatching a vehicle to come to my rescue, it would have been a terrible prospect. Not even the police, who were nearby, came to our aid when we appealed to them to arrest and interrogate one of the mercenaries my security detail had managed to apprehend amidst to tumult,” wrote Chakwera

He added: “Before our arrival, the organizing committee had asked our delegation to not wear any Malawi Congress Party branded attire to the function, which we respectfully obliged to and which helped to ease the tension. However, members of the Democratic Progressive Party delegation were summarily told to leave the function because of the violence of the youth they had brought there. To our satisfaction, in a prudent move that we thought would put the matter to rest, Hon. Grace Chiumia, who is a member of cabinet and was the Guest of Honor, spoke publicly at the event to apologise for the conduct of the youth.

“Sadly, these sort of attacks on me have become a pattern, going by a similarly violent attack on me by DPP-clad armed youth in Chiradzulo back in January, in full view of onlooking and idle police officers. Even more sad and disappointing is the official statement from the Publicity Secretary of the Democratic Progressive Party, accusing me and the Malawi Congress Party of being the perpetrators of the these acts of violence. It is clear that the DPP leadership has not only adopted a policy of terrorizing the New and peaceful MCP under my leadership, but also a strategy of invoking the history of violence in the Old MCP ended by Malawians in 1994 to excuse and justify the culture of violence now entrenched and metastasized in the Democratic Progressive Party. They believe that Malawians are stupid enough to be deceived by these tactics, but we believe that Malawians across the country are wise enough to see these machinations for the terrorism that they are.”

Meanwhile DPP’s spokesperson Francis Kasaila has distanced the party from the violence.

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