Economist Dr Matthews Chikaonda, who is set to retire as Group Chief Executive of Press Corporation Limited, is waiting in the wings to take over leadership of the newly-formed United Transformation Party (UTP), Nyasa Times understands.
The new political formation is mainly made up of new blood in frontline politics and some recycles.
UTP is being driven by former Malawi Confederation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry president Newton Kambala as the party’s interim president, but an official privy to the new party told Nyasa Times meetings are being hosted by Chikaonda and that he is the president-in waiting.
Repeated efforts to obtain comment from Chikaonda were futile.
“There have been meetings with Chikaonda and I can tell you there will be a big bang when the party launches in January and unveil the president,” an official told Nyasa Times.
Chikaonda is on record saying that there has been a deficit of credible and transformational leadership in Malawi, a fact which has not benefitted the citizens.
The economist revealed the lingering hope after the independence period was that in the shortest period possible, Malawi would be a prosperous nation standing on its own feet with poverty dramatically reduced.
He quoted from the novel ‘The Beautiful Ones are Not Yet Born’, by Ghanaian author Ayi Kwei Armah who reflected on the Nkrumah years and on the military junta that overthrew him:
“In the life of the nation itself, maybe nothing really new would happen. New men would take into their hands the power to steal the nation’s riches and to use it for their own satisfaction. That, of course, was to be expected ……. But for the nation itself there would only be a change of embezzlers and a change of the hunters and the hunted.”
UTP secretary-general Alex Solanke said the party will parade its leaders nationwide after launch.
He said UTP has been formed because there is “poor leadership” in Malawi.
“Malawians seem to lack effective leadership,” he told Daybreak Malawi program on Capital Radio.
We have started and we have already gone to the people . We have been to several districts.
“It will take time for people to know us [but] we will build strong and viable party,” Solanke said.
There has been fevered speculation that the new party will have an electoral alliance with Malawi Congress Party (MCP).
Solanke hinted on this during the radio interview when he praised MCP “as the party that belong to the people .”
He said UTP stand for transformation of the people and aim at ending “growing inequality” in the country.
Notable names in this new party include lawyer Edwin Banda, William Jalani, Ian Kanyuka, Eunice Makangala and Moses Kunkuyu.
Others are Janet Chikoko, Charles Mwambyale and Nevert Gondwe.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :