Military service is voluntary, and individuals at least age 18 are eligible to enlist. In May student protesters were joined by striking workers in Blantyre.
This is largely true with the consequence that there have been few large flows of refugees out of the country. Most immediately there is the danger of violent intimidation of opponents of the Malawi Congress Party, especially in the Central Region, in the weeks before the general elections.This has meant, for example, that Malawi has been able to approach Mozambique about the return of the Young Pioneers who fled across the border. It was ruled that the offence of sedition encompassed non-violent criticism of the government and did not require any intention to incite violence. The High Court has judicial authority over all civil and criminal cases. David Livingstone visited Lake Malawi then called Lake Nyasa in and was followed in succeeding decades by British missionaries, traders and planters. As well as being an effective method of political control it also played a useful role in revenue raising. After the first attack President Banda boasted publicly that his "boys" were responsible. Chewa is the sole medium of instruction in the early years of schooling and the only indigenous language used on the radio, although it is the mother tongue of less than half of Malawians.
However, there have also been setbacks. The constitution also provided for the creation of an upper legislative chamber, but it was not established by the target completion date in ; a proposal to cancel plans for the creation of such a chamber was passed by the National Assembly in One had to be produced in order to enter a market, board a bus or obtain health care.
Opposition politicians were charged under both these provisions during the referendum campaign. Smallholder tobacco farming is not permitted in any other region, for example.
The major exports are tobacco, sugar and tea.