The Blantyre City Council has rejected an application by the United Transformation Movement (UTM) to hold a political rally at Nyambadwe Primary School Ground in Blantyre on grounds that the grouping is not a registered political party.

This has been disclosed in a statement released on Thursday signed by BCC Chief Executive Officer Lytton Mkata made available to faceofmalawi reporter.

According to Mkata, it is illegal to allow UTM to hold a rally by citing section 17(2) of the political party Act which prohibits any political party that is not registered from holding a rally.

“Reference is made to your letter in which you sought permission to hold a political rally at Nyambadwe primary school ground on 29th September, 2018 in the city of Blantyre.

“We regret to inform you that permission is hereby not granted for the United Transmission Movement (UTM) to hold the said rally on the ground that it has come to the council’s knowledge that you are not registered as a political party,” reads part of the letter.

BCC Public Relations Officer Anthony Kasunda confirmed the authenticity of the letter in an interview with Zodiak Broadcasting Station (ZBS).

According to Kasunda, the decision has been arrived at after wide consultation.

Commenting on the development UTM spokesperson Dr. Joseph Chidanti Malunga expressed shock over matter describing it as political persecution by the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) under Pre4sident Professor Arthur Peter Mutharika.

Malunga said the movement is at the moment consulting its legal team on the matter.

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