Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) acting president Peter Mutharika on Sunday called for a truce with the media, saying all the wrongs that DPP functionaries committed against the media should be forgiven.
Addressing a rally at Mgona near Lilongweâ€™s industrial area of Kanengo, Mutharika said he has equally forgiven the media if there were some misunderstanding with them.
“At this time, I want to thank The Nation and The Daily Times for coverage of the last rally [in Thyolo]. This is time to bury hatchets and work together. Whether you are The Nation, Zodiak, The Daily Times, Capital Radio, Nyasatimes, Malawi Voice or Malawi Democrat, let us work together,” said Mutharika in a speech that lasted 12 minutes.
During the DPP rule led by the late president Bingu wa Mutharika, the private media was under fire, with government banning advertisement in Nation Publications Limited (NPL) brands, among other outlets. Parliament also passed repressive laws to muzzle the media.
Besides most DPP national governing council members and members of Parliament, there were 21 trucks that ferried people from as far as Kasungu to the rally and hordes of DPP painted vehicles with messages of “Peter Mutharika Boma 2014″.
In their remarks, DPP vice-president Jean Kalirani and director of women Patricia Kaliati described the recent 100 days celebrations by President Joyce Banda as “a shame to all right thinking women”, saying her first days in office have been characterised by rising crime against women.
This was Mutharikaâ€™s second rally since the death of his brother, Bingu on April 5 2012.