Mzuzu University (Mzuni) Alumni Association will this month end hold its annual elective general assembly where three candidates—Naomi Banda, Elias Gaveta and John Paul—are expected to battle it out for the presidency.
For the first time, since it was established years ago, a female candidate—Banda—has shown interest to contest for the position which has all along been held by men.
She told Nyasa Times in an interview that it was time that the country, including the Mzuni Alumni Association, started “being inclusive enough with women,” saying her candidature presents the association with the long awaited opportunity to choose leadership that is “unique” and has “a realistic vision of deliverables.”
According to Banda, her administration would be a “leadership that is committed to the life and growth of the alumni association”, adding that she will seek to champion “an actionable strategic plan” that will define short, medium and long-term goals that take into consideration their financing, relevance, capacity implementation and sustainability implications.
“The strategic plan shall guide current programming and shall be a template on which future Alumni leaderships will build on. I realize that the fate of the alumni association doesn’t depend on fancy, wishful thinking pledges that do not have a clear pathway to our financing and achievability. Such an approach risks hitting rock bottom and breeds frustrations in return among many well-meaning alumni,” she said.
According to the association’s electoral committee chairperson, Edward Misanjo, the elections which were expected to be held in Salima on May 29 will now be held at Linde Motel in Mponela.
According to Misanjo, after scrutinising and engaging the Presidential candidates on the then proposed venue, it was observed that Salima would give advantage to some candidates.
Mzuni Alumni was formed in 2005 to uphold the values of the university by promoting and complementing its efforts in providing quality education, training and research and complementary services to meet the technological, social and economic needs of individuals and communities in Malawi and beyond.
Its objectives, according to Section 3 of its constitution, are to promote fellowship among members of the Association and between the University and its Alumni, to advance the course of education and influence public policy of such courses and to support the University where necessary.