The much touted meeting between Peter Mutharika, leader of Malawi’s opposition Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) and US President Barack Obama was not on any programme in the first place, the party’s spokesman confessed on Sunday.
Mutharika is in United States on a holiday but his party’s acting secretary-general Dr Allan Chiyembekeza and aide Kondwani Nankhumwa claimed he would meet Obama, saying they are long time buddies.
But speaking on popular Tiuzeni Zoona interview programme on Zodiak Broadcasting Station , DPP spokesman Nicholous Dausi could nto confirm about Mutharika meeting Obama.
He, however, said the DPP leader will be visiting universities where he once taught law.
But Dausi also claimed Obama was a university student of Mutharika.
However, Obama went to Harvard University an institution where Mutharika was not a lecture.
The Obama- Mutharika meeting attracted attention in the local media and a newpaper columnist asked DPP to apologise to Malawians for “lying to them in the name of public relations.”
Writting recently in the Weekend Nation, columnist George Kasakula trashed DPP for “trying to use the name of Obama to impress Malawians, thinking that they are daft and they would indeed feel good about Mutharika.”
He wrote: “Granted, we all need to be inspired by the amazing story of Obama, but I just feel it is now reaching ridiculous levels in Malawi. Honestly, it is becoming pathetic and miserable. Surely, DPP can be creative to engage in better PR moves than this. Miserable stunts won’t save them.”
The columnist also advised DPP to convince Malawians that they are a changed lot “who would not tell police to murder them in daylight as it happened on July 20, 2011 when 20 young men were ruthlessly gunned down by those who were supposed to protect them and, yet, their only crime was to protest against bad governance.”
He also advised the party to convince Malawians that, given a chance to run this country “they would not arrogantly wreck the economy again” and also assure radical university students that “they would be safe to engage in mental gymnastics with their hot heads without being butchered and thrown on a cold concrete in the manner it happened to one Robert Chasowa of the Polytechnic. “
Mutharika, who succeeded his late brother, President Bingu wa Mutharika, following his sudden death in April, has publicly declared that he has ambitions to lead DPP in the 2014 elections as presidential candidate.
The party will hold a convention next April. It’s believed that MP Henry Mussa and current Speaker of Parliament Henry Chimunthu will challenge him.
He was recently tipped by Nation on Sunday to be the likely winner of 2014 presidential contest followed by United Democratic Front (UDF) youthful presidential candidate Atupele Austin Muluzi, and in the distant third was incumbent, Joyce Banda.
Mutharika is also reportedly planning to purchase a helicopter and a jet to use in the 2014 election campaign.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :