A bitter row erupted between UTM Party and Malawi Congress Party (MCP) on Thursday Saulos Chilima used his party vehicle branded with UTM symbols and his face as presidential candidate on his whistle stops in Nkhotakota with MCP demanding it be erased.
MCP got mad and censured Chilima for not using the face of Tonse Alliance candidate Lazarus Chakwera and MCP colours.
Chakwera is MCP president and the ticket that Tonse Alliance is supporting is of MCP with symbols of party.
MCP says Chilima cannot be marketing his face and brand when the face is not on the ballot paper.
The country’s estranged vice-president Chilima has instead told off MCP that he cannot use MCP colours in the campaign as he is using his own money to woo votes for the alliance. Chilima added that the vehicles he is using are UTM vehicles and they cannot be branded MCP.
Chilima’s deepest fear is that UTM could be dead, buried and forgotten if his face and UTM logos will be replaced by MCP brands.
To strike a balance after pressure, Chilima accepted to remove his face and UTM logo but refused to use MCP symbols.
On Friday, Chilima reluctantly removed the branding of his face on his UTM vehicle in his whistle stop in Salima on Friday.
But he has already instructed UTM supporters and officials not to use MCP symbols as he fights to prevent the demise of his party.
Chilima had pushed for UTM to retain its identity in the fresh election by demanding that they present a symbol that reflects the identity of the two parties on the ballot paper.
Chakwera did make the application to Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) to allow them change the cockerel symbol which MCP uses on the ballot papers to one that reflects the alliance with UTM.
But MEC rejected Chakwera’s application for them to change the symbol of MCP into something else. MEC said that change would be against the law.
This means that while MCP’s identity remains intact, UTM’s identity is dying.
MCP loyalists have hinted that after elections they will make it clear if Chakwera wins that it is an MCP government and a Chakwera presidency. They will promote MCP and ensure the Chakwera administration has all MCP footprints all over.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :