Ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) deputy governor for the north Afick Mbewe has refused to resign from his position after district governors from the region told him to do so.
DPP regional governor (North) Kenneth Sanga and 22 district governors whom Mbewe said had backed the candidacy of vice president Saulos Chilima, told Mbewe to resign, saying his decision to back Chilima was not in line with the party policy.
Sanga said Mbewe failed to tow party line – pto declare their allegiance to President Peter Mutharika – could not therefore cling to his position.
But Mbewe said Sanga and 22 other officials have no powers to force him resign.
“I was elected by the majority of the votes during the convention. The 22 are nothing to me, they have no powers, I will still continue performing my duties as vice regional governor,” he said.
The demand to have Mbewe resign came as the DPP youth wing demanded the resignation of the party’s Lewis Ngalande for also openly supporting the candidacy of Chilima as the party presidential candidate in the 2019 polls.
DPP gurus have said Sanga the convention will endorse Mutharika and not to elect another candidate.
The endorsement of Mutharika come in the wake of an opinion by former first lady Callista Mutharika two weeks ago that Mutharika, currently 79 years old, would be too old to carry on as he would be 84 at time of leaving office in 2024 if re-elected next year.
She argued that it is normal that thinking capacity deteriorate as one gets older; hence, her recommendation that Chilima, 45, be the torchbearer for DPP in the elections.
Callista’s sentiments have stirred debate from several quarters, including DPP national governing committee (NGC), individual NGC members and political commentators.