Malawi’s Speaker Chimunthu Banda to join DPP leadership contest

Malawi National Assembly Speaker, Henry Chimunthu Banda, is said to be ready to throw his hat into the ring for  Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) leadership contest.

Allies of the Speaker told Nyasa Times that Chimunthu Banda would put himself forward as candidate capable of rebuilding the DPP.

DPP members have been trying to persuade Chimunthu Banda to join the contest when the party holds its national convention in April 2013.

Since the demise of President Bingu wa Mutharika in April, some wondered whether Chimunthu Banda still belonged to the former ruling party after many of its legislators ditched the party for President Joyce Banda’s People’s Party (PP).

Chimunthu Banda publicly showed he remains a DPP die-hard after he chanted the party slogan during the launch of K3 million football and netball tournaments in Nkhotakota North where he is also Member of Parliament last weekend.

Henry Chimunthu Banda launching a 3 million Kwacha trophy at his
constituency, only DPP members and supporters were present.–Photos by Patricia Njatula

The Speaker punctuated his speech with his party’s slogan: ‘DPP Woyee!’

Professor Peter Mutharika, who is acting DPP president is running for the president post at the convention. Another name which is linked to contest is that of Chiradzulu East lawmaker Henry Mussa.

DPP publicity secretary Nicholas Dausi said the convention had been shifted from December to April  to allow more time to prepare.

“Our constitution stipulates that delegates and party officials have to be told one month in advance before holding the convention. Some members felt that December was too close and needed to be given enough time to prepare and campaign for whichever positions they are interested in,” said Dausi.

Dausi is the chairperson of the organizing committee of the convention which will take three days from 17 to 19 April.

Malawi’s next general elections will be in 2014.

DPP women supporters dancing when Chimunthu launched his trophies

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