President Lazarus Chakwera’s spin doctor at State House, pastor Sean Kampondeni has dismisses calls for the presidency to make public details contained in the confidential agreement between Malawi Congress Party (MCP) and UTM Party of State vice-president Saulos Chilima.
MCP and UTM Party are two key partners in the Tonse Alliance and together managed to win the June 23 court sanctioned fresh presidential election.
Chilima is on record to have said publicly he will take over from Chakwera in tune with the rotational presidency pact.
But Chakwera, days later, came back with a response on Times Television that nothing regarding what Chilima had earlier said had been agreed upon.
MCP cadres have also vehemently argued that they would not swallow the one-term president issue.
Kampondeni, who is State House director of communications, said during the second in a series of newly-introduced weekly State House briefings at Kamuzu Palace in Lilongwe on Monday that President Chakwera was committed to the agreement.
He described the calls for disclosure a distraction to the governing coalition’s agenda.
“The President has answered the question before. The President says what matters to him is that there is an agreement and the agreement is about delivering to Malawians the transformation he promises.
“The rest of the issues is not something the President would want to distract him,” said Kampondeni, who is also Chakwera’s son-in-law.
Observers say, Chakwera and Chilima, as leaders, aren’t respecting their followers by not committing to a shared duty of divulging the needed details of their deal.
Chilima, and his technocratic allies, has been working on reforms to the public sector, while Chakwera has been concentrating on maintaining public support.
But each man’s supporters claim they are undermining each other.
Chakwera himself has indicated that it is too early to talk of 2025, only saying he is sure he will not run for a third term.
Meanwhile, the MCP and UTM are both increasing their parliamentary numbers thanks to defections from DPP and the United Democratic Front (UDF). The two coalition partners will compete with each other at November 10 five parliamentary bye-elections .
Commentators fear that if President and vice-president campaign against each other, they will dash the hopes of a long-term merger between Chakwera’s MCP and Chilima’s UTM.
They argue that the only way this can come to an end is through being transparent: Tonse Alliance leadership must come out of the cocoon and share with the public the contents of their deal.
On whether President Chakwera would consider voluntary disclosure of party financiers, Kampondeni said: “The question on voluntary disclosure is subject to the decision of Executive Committee of Malawi Congress Party.”
On the party financiers, Kampondeni said “the President has promised that he is going to favour or shield nobody.”
He said the President is committed to ensuring that “the law is followed because he campaigned on rule of law.”Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :