Govt promises to review sedition laws

Anthony Kasunda

Malawi's President Dr Lazarus Chakwera has set his concentration on reviewing seditious laws, Presidential Press Secretary, Anthony Kasunda has said.

Kasunda said on Monday during the State House Quarterly Briefing that the Tonse-led administration would soon bring to Parliament seditious laws for review.

The sedition law is one of the pieces of legislation that journalists and other quarters in the country have been pushing for review, saying it is inconsistent with the Republican Constitution as it is an infringement on the freedom of opinion, expression and the press.

Kasunda said this in reaction to Vice-President Saulos Chilima’s recent remarks on removing immunity from a sitting President, saying this application to prosecution is selective.

Section 92 (2) of the Constitution of the Republic of Malawi provides immunity of the President from criminal prosecution.

“You have seen the Chakwera-led administration bringing to Parliament land laws and very soon, there will be laws to do with sedition. 

“This is one area that the media have been crying for, for a long time that it should be reviewed,” said Kasunda. 

“As you may recall the Table Mountain declaration talks about seditious laws, these laws will be taken to Parliament for review shortly,” he said.

Kasunda said, the President would want laws that affect Malawians to be addressed but he (the President) will, at the right time, address the issues that affect the presidency. 

“Issues to do with immunity will be tackled at a later time but first what needs to be done is to look into issues which will give peace to Malawians such as land laws and others. 

“Malawians need land and this is what the president is focusing on,” said Kasunda.

Earlier, Executive Assistant to the President and Director of Communications, Sean Kampondeni gave an overview of the progress the president has made in the last two years that he has been in office. 

Kampondeni, therefore, said the State House Briefs are held to keep Malawians informed about deliverables of President Lazarus Chakwera’s administration and not to comment on political matters.

A video depicting programmes that the Tonse-led administration has done in the areas of infrastructure, women empowerment and Social Cash Transfer in its two years of governing was played.