BY MZATI NKOLOKOSA
The use of Tipp Ex in the 2019 elections was first reported at Chinsapo in Lilongwe on the night of 21 May.
A DPP monitor noted the correctional fluid on one of the centre’s result tabulation tables. Immediately, the monitor alerted members of DPP Monitors Whatsapp group. They agreed to stay awake and alert all night.
Some minutes after the Whatsapp alert, three DPP monitors at a centre in Dowa, outside Kamuzu International Airport, noticed Tipp Ex and queried attempts to change figures. MCP monitors became angry and were about to beat up the three DPP monitors when they ran away to the airport for safety. They never returned to the centre. They called a friend from town to pick them up from the airport.
There are such stories of violence against DPP and UTM monitors in some parts of the country. But there is also good news: MEC officers remained vigilant and MCP’s plan of tampering with results in favour of Lazarus Chakwera, collapsed.
MEC chairperson Jane Ansah’s question, “who gave you Tipp ex?” has not been understood up to now. It is a reflective question for all of us because Ansah is aware Tipp-Ex was introduced by the MCP and her question was meant to help us to think deeply about MCP’s hidden agenda. In addition, her question was meant to inspire journalists to investigate Tipp Ex in the election.
Tipp Ex failed. MCP did not rig the election because MEC systems were tight and staff tabulated results professionally. MEC’s professionalism annoyed MCP so much that the party started drama to damage the elections that were managed professionally, according to party monitors and electoral institutions, both local and foreign. MCP’s demand for Ansah to resign is the work of Chakwera. He is as such. He loves being what he is not.
It is not the first time for Chakwera to behave so. The story of his life shows a man who does what he preaches against or a man who preaches against what he does.
In 2018, the Ministry of Finance disbursed K4 billion development fund to all parliamentarians. Chakwera and his MCP approved the allocation in Parliament on Thursday, 1 March, 2018, and received an amount allocated to each MP. The same Chakwera sent his boy Timothy Mtambo, a well-known MCP functionary, who trades under human rights activism, to organise demonstrations against the development funding. Chakwera joined the demonstrations against funding that he supported, approved and received.
Chakwera portrays himself as an angel sent from heaven but he is not. Instead, he is a troubled human being ready to shed blood to quench his hunger for power. He has failed to take MCP to victory twice and the next move was for him to resign to pave way for someone else. Instead, Chakwera is clinging to MCP’s presidency, searching for a third term via the court. It is funny, isn’t it? How Chakwera is managing to fool MCP for him to remain the party’s president.
This is a Chakwera who, during a press briefing on 2 November 2018, called Mutharika a “pathological liar.” Yet in reality, Chakwera is that “pathological liar.” He has, for example, been referring to present demonstrations as peaceful yet allowing people from his area to terrorise motorists on Kasiya Road. Some motorists had to pay up to K20,000 to buy their way.
Chakwera is requiring MCP MPs to ferry hundreds of people armed with pangas from rural areas of central region to the capital for demonstrations, a story that journalists have chosen to ignore. This is a Chakwera who asked MEC to release results less than 24 hours after voting closed, saying he had won and “I am the commander-in-chief” of the armed forces. And within 48 hours, the same Chakwera obtained an injunction restraining MEC from announcing results of the presidential poll.
This is a Chakwera who failed to make an alliance with UTM and lost the election. Now he is fooling his supporters with a post-election alliance with UTM. Doing what he preached against and preaching against what he is doing. And his supporters have fallen for the childish tactic. This is a Chakwera who, two months before elections, was planning disturbing the elections. Yet he poses as if he did not have such an evil plan with Mtambo.
He is a Malawian but speaks with an African-American tongue. He lost an election, yet he claims victory.
This Chakwera, always wanting what he is not.