University Youths Challenged on Election Participation Ahead of 2025 Polls

Youths from institutions of higher learning in Malawi have been challenged to take a proactive role in the election process in the country.

Speaking at his residence in Area 10, in Lilongwe, on Thursday, May 2, 2024, His Excellency Rune Skinnebach, European Union Ambassador in Malawi, hosted Catholic University of Malawi (CUNIMA) Political Science students and lecturers, said the university youths need to advocate for meaningful inclusion of youth voices in decision-making. 

“It is about harnessing the use of social media to discourage issues such as hate speech and tribalism, but rather to focus on policy-based dialogue and holding leaders to account. Ahead of 2025, it is about registering to vote and casting your vote for those visionary changemakers who can transform Malawi,” said Ambassador Skinnebach.

His Excellency Skinnebach further advised the youth not to wait for the elections to hold the leaders accountable for matters affecting the country.

“Discontent with the state of affairs, Malawians often say, Tizawonetsana 2025 [We shall see in 2025]. My question is always: is 2025 the only time Malawians can influence decision-making and their development? What happens during the entire five years between the ballots?” wondered Skinnebach.

Concurring with Ambassador Skinnebach, the Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) Commissioner, Olivia Mchanju Liwewe, said university students are the vanguards of change and progress in our society, hence calling for their participation in the forthcoming general elections.   

“Your voices carry weight, and your actions have the power to shape the future of our nation. Therefore, I urge you to be actively involved in the electoral process, from voter registration, which will commence in September this year, to casting your ballots on election day on September 16, 2025,” said Commissioner Liwewe.

Commissioner Liwewe added that the MEC has made significant reforms that will foster the smooth conduct of the elections in 2025.

President of the Political Science Association at the Catholic University of Malawi, James Lihoma, said the youths of the country have shunned the political space for being hoodwinked by leaders who seek them as bridges to get political seats.

“Honestly, youths are now playing it smart; they now realise that politicians are there to use them and dump them once they are voted into power,” said Lihoma.

Over thirty students and lecturers from the department of political science at the Catholic University of Malawi were hosted at the Ambassador Skinnebach residence for an education visit.

Malawi is scheduled to hold a general election in 2025 to usher in councillors, Members of Parliament (MP), and the President.

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