Chakwera admits fast-tracked convention to avoid injunctions: Beware of external influence, MCP warned

Presidential candidate for the  opposition Malawi Congress Party (MCP) has said the party rushed to hold its  convention after the Supreme Court vacated an injunction restraining it from conducting the indaba,  to avoid further injunctions from the embattled former Secretary General Gustav Kaliwo.

Chakwera: We had to do convention in a hurry

The MCP leader said the court battles were derailing the new agenda for the party .

“I  would like to appreciate the organising committee for their preparations of the convention. Though they did it in a hurry, but here we are by the grace of God we have done it.

“We had to do it as soon as possible after the vacation of the courtborder to avoid the running battles on an injunction that was there,” said Chakwera as he closed the convention on Sunday.

At the convention, Chakwera was maintained as president, Sidik Mia was named first vice-president while Harry Mkandawire assumed the second-vice presidency.

Kaliwo has said he will still pursue the matter in court, saying he did not attend the convention because doing so would have been “dignifying an illegal convention”.

He said party president Lazarus Chakwera did not follow protocol and to be re-elected on a position without following the constitution is something uncalled for as he was supposed to relinquish his position as president first and let people vote under article 37 (7)(5) of the party’s constitution.

Said Kaliwo: “Chakwera should have first relinquished his power and if convention has been called it means the [former] first vice-president of the party acts as a president. In this case, Richard Msowoya is, therefore, an acting president. Going forward, we will wait for a legitimate convention which will be called by Msowoya .”

But Kaliwo’s replacement, Eisenhower Mkaka, has  described his position as kicks of a dying horse.

Said Mkaka: “He [Kaliwo] indeed has nothing to say because his position no longer exists. The NEC he belonged to was dissolved according to our constitution. Contrary to what he is saying, NEC is the one which is supposed to call for a convention, so that happened.”

Governance expert Mankhumbo Munthali has told Nyasa Times that issue of MCP wrangles is a complex issue that can be best understood by applying a holistic approach to the matter.

“There has been a tendency by those who have publicly commented on the matter to solely heap the blame on the failure of leadership (Dr. Lazarus Chakwera) in the party to address these squables. However, while it is true that Chakwera’s leadership has not helped matters by showing some vestiges of dictatorship by amongst other issues flouting the party’s constitution when dealing with Kaliwo-Msowoya camp, it is important that we do not pay a blind eye to the political dynamics that may characterise the issue in the process making the wrangle seem unresolvable.

”It would be naive and gullible enough  to solely conclude that Msowoya and Kaliwo are victims of defending party’s constitutionalism. Evidence suggests that prior to Sidick Mia’s declaration to vie for the Vice Presidency following his joining of MCP, Msowoya remained mum in the face of MCP’s ‘unfair’ treatment of Jessie Kabwila,Kaliwo, Felix Jumbe  and others. Certainly, Msowoya was so comfortable to smile at the party’s treatment of these as long as he was assured of the runningmate in the next 2019 elections. It was therefore interesting to hear Msowoya joining forces with Kabwira and Kaliwo under the guise of defending party constitutionalism. Now that is apparent-just looking at recent events- that Chakwera has decided to pair with Mia in the next election, Msowoya may be determined to do whatever he can-even if it means using legal processes- to frustrate Chakwera’s presidential bid. In this regard, the issue may be beyond defending the party’s constitution,” observed Munthali.

He said Kaliwo’s recent manouvres seem to suggest that there is more to what he is fighting for than the mere defence of party constitutionalism.
”How do you explain a scenario where someone has all along called for an early party convention but when the party leadership bows down to his demands by calling for one he gets an injunction stopping the party from proceeding with the very convention he has all along been calling for? Why this sudden change of mind? Chances are that Kaliwo, just like Msowoya, knows that he could not  win at the convention following the growing perception in the party that he is externally influenced [Nkholokolo] to destablise the party,” he continued.
However, in contrast to Msowoya whose sole frustration may be that he is left out of the runningmate position hence his continued opposition to Chakwera leadership, the case of Kaliwo seems to suggest that there is more to him being fired from the party, observed the governance expert.
”Unlike Kabwira and Msowoya who despite challenging Chakwera’s leadership have been seen holding rallies, Kaliwo has all along remained invisible or inactive in as far as holding political rallies for the party on the ground but only visible when fighting the party leadership. It is this invisibility which seems to put weight to the growing assertion amongst MCP party loyalist that he is being sponsored by the DPP to destablise MCP. If this is true, then it may be difficult to resolve such externally influenced divisions.
“As one local scribe ably stated, It’s difficult to overcome sponsored divisions in any set-up…because there are people who eke a living out of them. As to whether the DPP may the culprit in the alleged Kaliwo-instigated MCP wrangles or not, the answer is yes considering the fact that the Chakwera seems to be DPP’s fiercest rival, and that the DPP would at the moment prefer to face a seemingly weaker Chakwera-Msowoya combination to Chakwera-Mia combination. In fact, the DPP would now not only be interested to work with Kaliwo but also a ‘frustrated’ Msowoya .”
He said after the K4 Billion scandal and the electoral reforms saga clearly shows how clever the DPP can be in massaging the opposition greed to advance their selfish political goals.
“ Otherwise, it is important not to overlook politics and interests in the whole saga as what can be seen as a mere legal or constitutional problem may turn out to be largely political to the extent that there may be external influence,” he said.
Malawi will hold tripartite elections in May next year to elect the President and Vice-President, 193 members of Parliament and 462 ward councillors.
Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :

Please share this Article if you like Email This Post Email This Post

More From the World

newest oldest most voted
Notify of

So Chakwera was aware from the word go that he was breaking the law? Why fearing the injunction if you are doing a legally correct activity. Shame on you former Man of God for rushing an activity in order to perpetuate illegality.


His Excellency the Reverend Fake Accent, President of Banana Republic


Chakwela had to call for a convention at all cost because the owner of the money Sidik Mia wanted a position that would ensure him that he will get back his money when they get into government. Records are there that most of Mias businesses are going under and the longer it takes he would be declared bankrupt. He already sold his cattle ranch to Faizal just to finance MCP and has sold most of his businesses and Chakwera was under heavy pressure to conduct the convention at any cost,


DPP supporter can not appreciate anything MCP. Leave MCP alone.

Listen and Love


Listen and Love
My heartfelt congratulations to CHAKWERA AND THE MCP TEAM. The nation expects much more from you than leading the MCP. Keep united and intact to LEAD MALAWI COME 22 May, 2019. Thanks for kicking out the notorious Kaliwo. He is history in MCP, what a menace he was. You sometimes could question yourself WHOSE INTERESTS was he serving. Gustav is indeed a frustrated guy because his ulterior motives have come to noughts. And which court in Malawi can entertain stupidity from this crying fellow who without any position in MCP, has no locus standi to take the MCP to court.… Read more »

The MCP convention was like watching a terrible film of Desperado – rushed, no purpose and policy.


Zoonadi. There was no focus on policies, manifesto or developmental programs if the party wins the elections. The convention was driven by greed and therefore fights for positions.


You are a DPP die-hard. LeaveMCP alone.


I am 100% apolitical. I just don’t believe that any of the political parties have cut its umbilical cord from its mother party (Kamuzu_led MCP). We have same politicians who served in Kamuzu-led MCP in UDF and then fled to Bingu-led DPP who then fled to PP who then fled to Peter-led DPP. In all of them they have carried the same genetic code. If Malawi has to prosper, we need a different kind of politics and the current crop ofpolitical parties wont cut it.


I need to get an injunction on your FAKE ACCENT!!!! It make me boil to the core! I feel like hammering you when you speak


You are a Dpp follower. Leave MCP alone.


Simple if u c somebody behind Kaliwo and against the convention he or she is dpp


Apitilize zawozo a Msowoya ndi Kaliwo…pano tizangowakutumulapo chabe….asayiwale zimene Chakuamba ndi Chihana anawona ku Mangochi..kuwakutumula ku Kasungu a Chakuamba, …kuwotcha galimoto ya Chihana ku Mangochi. asiyeni apitilize…elasticity of demand and supply izawawonekela


MCP convention was a SHAM and Chakwera cannot fool people on that. And yet, his sympathisers think its OK to ferry people in the middle of the night to vote and put people into positions. That’s where we always go wrong as Malawians. We see something being done wrongly – we clap hands and say its OK because of our political interests. Well, until one day the snake we have nurtured comes back to bite us. SHAME on MCP. Where is the party’s manifesto. What policies does MCP want to implement, of course, NONE except wanting to be in power.

More From Nyasatimes