United Transformation Movement (UTM) will this afternoon appeal against the decision by the Registrar of Political Parties not to register the grouping as a party.
On September 13, the movement applied to have the grouping registered as a political party as the law stipulates. But the registrar general's office rejected the application on the grounds that the grouping applied to be registered as UTM and not under its full name, United Transformation Movement.
The Deputy of the Registrar of Political Parties Chikumbutso Namelo said the movement deliberately presented registrations documents in the name of UTM.
“I regret to inform you that I have decided to refuse the registration of UTM as a political party on the ground that the application is not in conformity with the Act in terms of Section 7 (1) as read with Section 18 (a) (1) and (ii) of the Act,” read the response from the registrar.
According the registrar, the movement filed the wrong information to mislead for the purpose of obtaining the registration of the party.
“Please take note, that under section 17 of the Act, it is an offence for a political party or any other combination of persons to electioneer in connection with an election in which political parties contest unless it is regarded as a registered party,” the statement further read.
But the grouping says it will challenge the decision in court this afternoon.
“We obviously vehemently disagree with the determination of the Registrar of Political Parties for a number of reasons including, but not limited to the fact that we were not given the opportunity to be heard on the matter by Registrar,” said the grouping in a press statement that was signed by its spokesperson, Joseph Chidanti Malunga.
“Accordingly, as per our entitlement under the cited legislation, we have instructed our legal counsel to file an appeal in the High Court against the determination of the Registrar,” the statement further read.
The grouping has however called upon its members to remain calm saying the situation is "under control".
“We would like to assure our members and supporters that our shared goal and common purpose of ensuring that our government is run for the benefit of all the people of Malawi and not the governors alone, remain undisturbed and on course,” the party said.
“Come 21st May, 2019 an overwhelming majority of Malawians shall choose to be led by new leadership whose primary purpose shall be to uplift their lives.”
The grouping said that shall only be possible under the leadership of its leader Saulos Chilima.