Deputy Speaker of Parliament Esther Mcheka-Chilenje has urged Malawians not to lose faith in democracy.
Speaking on Saturday at the International Day of Democracy commemorations in Mchinji, Mcheka-Chilenje said Malawians should not lose faith in their leaders but should hold them accountable for their work.
She said voter apathy and low turnout in important events are an indication that people have lost faith in democracy.
Said Chilenje: “Recent events have shown that many Malawians are discontent with what democracy has offered them because many have been let down by their leaders. But I urge you not to lose faith in democracy but rather be active in politics and participate.”
In his remarks, Member of Parliament (MP) for Nkhata Bay Central, who is also Malawi chairperson for International Parliament Union (IPU), Raphael Mhone said Malawi is on the right track in democracy, but it can do more, especially in civic educating rural people about democracy.
He said: “As a country, we have made major strides in democracy ever since we voted for multiparty. However, we have not done enough to educate people about democracy, especially at the institution level. There is need to reach the rural masses and educate them about democracy.”
International Day of Democracy falls on September 15 every year but the commemorations were held on Saturday in Malawi under the theme Democracy and Conflict Prevention.
The day offers a forum for MPs to engage and promote citizens’ understanding of the institution of Parliament and increase their participation in parliamentary matters.
It has been 20 years since the United Nations established the International Day of Democracy.