Malawi’s opposition leader Dr Lazarus Chakwera returned to a hero’s welcome in Lilongwe from his political tour in United States amidst reports of an alleged “plot” to overthrow President Peter Mutharika.
Chakwera, the president of Malawi Congress Party (MCP), has been implicated in a report that he has been having discussions with a group of people aimed at coming up with a plot to oust Mutharika, according to state intelligence after key documents were confiscated.
The United States Ambassador to Malawi, Viginia Palmer, allegedly endorsed the discussions.
But Chakwera who was serenaded by scores of his supporters in the VVIP arrivals hall at Kamuzu International Airport in Lilongwe, did not want to dignify the “plot” allegations with his comments.
He gave a brief statement in which he commented about political storm in his MCP, saying he will provide the leadership to resolve any differences.
“As you know, I had a long trip from USA but I have been briefed of the wrangles emerging within the party and let me assure you that we will sit down in contact and dialogue spirit and resolve them,” said Chakwera.
He was welcomed among others by Speaker of Parliament, Richard Msowoya who is also MCP vice president.
MCP’s Central Region chairperson Patrick Zebron Chilondola informed Chakwera about hunger situation, saying Malawians are starving and there is shortage of maize.
“We are in crisis bwana. The country is facing myriad problems. People are suffering. There Is shortage of maize. And the currency is losing its buying power,” said Chilondola.
He assured Chakwera that the MCP is still strong despite some isolated cases of in fighting
Chakwera, in his four minutes address, commended party members for coming “in large numbers”, saying he was “ grateful” for their support.
On the party infighting, he said : “We have got to be united, there is no other way.”
Thousands of party supporters and over 40 members of parliament, came to welcome Chakwera at the airport as the female singers sang “Mtsogoleri wathu, inde, inde” [Our true leader].
“These multitudes of people have turned out to welcome Chakwera because they think he is the only remaining voice through whom they can voice their grievances,” said opposition supporter Herbert Chiponde as Chakwera drove past.
Chakwera was driven away with several vehicles following him in MCP cavalcade, their occupants waving the MCP’s black, red and green flag.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :