The Centre for Multiparty Democracy (CMD) on Friday oriented journalists on the new Political Parties Act which President Peter Mutharika assented to early this year.
The new law, which is awaiting the Minister of Justice and Constitutional Affairs to appoint a date for it to come into force, will among others, regulate political party financing and ban handouts before and during the electoral cycle.
In an interview on the sidelines of the orientation in Blantyre, CMD executive director Kizito Tenthani said the new Act will level the playing field in politics.
He said: “We believe that if the law comes into effect before the elections period then political parties ought to comply to it to ensure the elections are free and fair.
“It is a law that guides the registration and regulation of political parties and how they should behave as players in our democracy.”
Tenthani added that CMD is pushing for the minister to appoint a date for the Act to come into force.
Last month, Minister of Justice an Constitutional Affairs Samuel Tembenu told The Nation that government is committed to ensuring that provisions in the Act are used in the ongoing electoral cycle as that was the purpose of passing the Bill last November.
The minister also said he would invite political parties and some parliamentary committees to develop regulations because there are certain rules that must be promulgated before the Act can come into force.
The new Act also compels political parties to disclose to the registrar of political parties sources of their funding and donations exceeding K1 million from individuals; or those exceeding K2 million from companies. n