Malawi Congress Party renaissance take off

Malawi’s oldest political party, the opposition Malawi Congress Party (MCP), has embarked on a campaign for revival by injecting new blood as it strategizes for next year’s elections.

The party is on a membership recruitment drive, with the youth being main target, to get its old glory back.

“We have to hit the ground running,” said MCP’s senior official and Member of Parliament for Lilongwe Msozi South, Vitus Dzoole-Mwale said.

Dzoole-Mwale disclosed that MCP will hold its national convention this April and there will be open contest for all positions including that of the president.

There are speculations that the current MCP president and leader of opposition in parliament, John Tembo, has been under pressure from the young kindred in the party to let go of power and allow others to lead MCP.

But Dzoole-Mwale was non-committal on whether or not Tembo, 79  would seek the candidature to be MCP’s torch bearer for the 2014 presidential race after failing to win it in previous two elections.

Tembo in a recent meeting with young kindred in MCP

He said that the April convention to be held in Lilongwe will be a chance for young blood to take over the mantle of power.

“We want to use this indaba to have more young people join the party and take up positions,” said Dzoole Mwale.

So far the name of former Speaker of Parliament, Louis Chimango has emerged as favourite to be the front runner to succeed Tembo.

Chimango, a lawyer by training, has not publicly commented on his stand to take over the reigns of MCP power.

But Member of Parliament for Nkhotakota Central, Edwin Banda has confirmed that he wants to contest for the party’s top seat.

Banda, a lawyer and a Pentecostal cleric, says MCP which led Malawi for 31 years and ruled with an iron fist under founding president Dr. Hastings Kamuzu Banda would assume the country’s leadership next year with all things being equal.

Outspoken Secretary General Chris Daza is also aspiring for presidential run.

Despite attempts by so called ‘young blood’ to wrestle power from him, Tembo has remained unmoved and has instead used his long stay in politics to ‘crash-into-powder’ his challengers.

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