United Democratic Front (UDF) president Atupele Muluzi has not ruled out talks with the ruling party to be running mate to President Peter Mutharika in the Constitutional Court sanctioned fresh presidential election in July.
Muluzi, however, said the party has not yet sealed a political deal with the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) for the renewal of a political alliance.
“I have been holding talks with all the major political parties on the possibility of an alliance because of the 50+1 issue.
“I have listened to all the political parties; the MCP, UTM and the DPP. Next thing now is for me to table the offers before the national executive committee which will make a final decision on the matter,” he said.
This was after the issue that he has dragged the UDF back into the DPP marriage hit social media platforms.
He could not deny nor confirm reports that Mutharika has offered him the running mate position inthe fresh election.
The young Muluzi, son to former president Bakili Muluzi who governed the country from1994 to 2004, said the DPP just like the MCP and UTM made their offers to the UDF and the issue of the running mate could be one of the issues disccussed.
UDF secretary general Kandi Padambo has also confirmed that the party has scheduled meetings this coming weekend on various matters including partnership options in the fresh elections.
“The NEC meeting has been scheduled to discuss various matters including partnership options in the wake of judicial clarification of what the term ‘majority’means in relation to presidential elections. It is only after NEC has weighed the options and indicated a preference that we got out to seek the opinion of our other leadership echelons and grassroots members, supporters and followers,” he said.
Mutharika has reportedly offered a running mate position to Muluzi and five ministerial positions and other ambassadorial posts to UDF members should UDF and its leader enter into an electoral alliance with DPP.
University of Malawi’s Chancellor College-based political scientist Ernest Thindwa said this is not surprising.
“DPP is aware that attracting the nod of 50 percent of voters will not be an easy prospect for a party that is widely perceived as an ethnic political grouping. It was relatively easier for DPP with the simple plurality (FPTP) which we have wrongly been using in previous elections,” Thindwa said in quotes reported by Malawi News on Saturday.
He said with the 50 +1 requirement, which is now a definitive law, DPP need to go beyond its traditional stronghold given its localised support base and working with UDF is one option the party can consider and likely to see regional-based electoral alliances.
Thindwa said DPP-UDF electoral alliance is certainly a formidable force and by all measures will disproportionately benefit DPP.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :