Malawi Vice President Saulos Chilima has returned from Nigeria where he attended the two day Africa-Israel dialogue summit.
Chilima was welcomed at Kamuzu International Airport (KIA) by his wife, Mary and other family friends and United Transformation Movement (UTM) officials.
His entourage to the summit consisted of only four people who included him, one officer staff and security personal.
Chilima left the country on Saturday for the summit which was organized by the by the Brenthurst Foundation.
The theme of the dialogue was Agriculture and Technology for Development and drew participation of international experts and leaders.
The Vice President’s participation was at the invitation of Olusegun Obasanjo, and former President of Nigeria, who is board chair of the Brenthurst Foundation.
The Brenthurst Foundation supports Initiative in seeking ways to fund African development and to organize conferences on African competitiveness.
Pictures released at the dialogue show Chilima, Obasanjo and a minister of finance from Lesotho casually sitting down discussing issues.
The Vice-President broke ranks with the governing Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) on June 6 this year and declared he will challenge President Peter Mutharika in the presidential race in the May 21 2019 Tripartite Elections.
Chilima—whom President Peter Mutharika picked as running mate in January 2014 where he served as Airtel Malawi managing director—had a visibly rosy relationship with the establishment until his declaration and the President subsequently stripped him of his Cabinet portfolio of Minister Responsible for Disaster Management Affairs and in-charge of National Public Events.
Since his declaration, Chilima has been sidelined from official engagements, including seeing off and welcoming the President, stirring debate among legal scholars on the position and status of the Vice-President.
Section 80 (3) of the Constitution provides that the Vice-President shall be elected concurrently with the President and the name of a candidate for the Vice-President shall appear on the same ballot paper as that of the presidential candidate who nominated him/her.