By Steria Manda
Governance and Human Rights Expert Undule Mwakasungula has applauded President Dr. Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera for the appointment of the inaugural Commissioners of the newly established Peace and Unity Commission, stressing that the institution of the Commission is key towards peacebuilding and unity in Malawi.
Mwakasungula, in his statement shared with us on Saturday evening, expressed satisfaction with the criteria the government used to identify and choose the Commissioners.
“The commissioners have been chosen for their integrity, experience, and dedication to the cause of peace, reflecting the rich variety and unity of our nation. It’s against this background that I extend my sincerest congratulations to the newly appointed commissioners of the Malawi Peace and Unity Commission as they are poised to usher in a new era of peacebuilding and unity, a beacon of hope for our nation as we journey towards the 2025 elections and beyond,” he said.
The renowned fearless human rights fighter added that the establishment of the Peace and Unity Commission is a testament to Malawi’s commitment to fostering a stable and harmonious society since its role will not only symbolic, but important in navigating the challenges of conflict resolution, social justice, and national reconciliation.
But Mwakasungula was quick to tip the new Commissioners to exercise highest level of professionalism and integrity when discharging their duties.
He said as the first commissioners, they carry the weight of expectation from Malawians that yearns for enduring peace.
“Their task is to lay the cornerstone upon which the foundation of our collective aspirations for a peaceful Malawi will be built. The commission is an embodiment of our resolve to address the undercurrents that have historically challenged our peace and unity, and it is with this in mind that their roles take on such profound significance,” he said, “The nation will recognize that the path ahead will be full of challenges. Establishing trust, fostering dialogue among disparate groups, and cultivating an inclusive approach to peacebuilding are but a few of the tasks that lie before the Commission. The commissioner’s efforts to set a strong foundation will require national commitment, strategic vision, and a deep understanding of the socio-political landscape of our nation.”
Mwakasungula further emphasized that the establishment of the Peace and Unity Commission is more critical now when Malawians approach the 2025 elections.
He observed that elections are always a moment of national reflection, choice, and often, heightened with tensions and that the Commission stands as a guardian of the country’s democratic values and as a mediator in times of potential conflict, ensuring that the will of the Malawians must be expressed and respected in a peaceful and orderly manner.
“Further, the work of the Commission adds significant value in addressing the challenges of peace and unity in Malawi. By promoting dialogue, engaging in conflict prevention, and advocating for equitable development, the Commission will contribute to a more resilient national fabric that will withstand the pressures of political, social, and economic challenges.
“In the quest to knit the fabric of a united Malawi, the Peace and Unity Commission must also serve as the custodian of our national identity, transcending political affiliations and partisan interests. It is crucial that the commission operates with impartiality, embodying the collective ethos of our nation rather than the divergent views of individual groups or parties. This nonpartisan approach is essential for fostering a sense of shared purpose and belonging among all Malawians, which is the bedrock upon which a peaceful and inclusive Malawi will be built,” he wrote.
He recommended that Commissioners should be entrusted with the responsibility of being the exemplars of objectivity, ensuring that every action taken and every decision made is in service of the greater good of our country.
He said by championing a national identity that celebrates diversity, peace and unity, the Peace and Unity Commission will pave the way for a legacy of harmony and solidarity, fortifying the foundations of our democracy as we move towards a future where every citizen is seen, heard, and valued.
“As the Commissioners embark on this noble journey, the people of Malawi, place their trust in the Commission ability to guide our nation towards a horizon of peace and prosperity. Therefore, the Commission actions must reflect the highest ideals of service to the nation, and their legacy be one of striving for unity, peace and hope for all Malawians,” said Mwakasungula.