Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Secretary General, Grezelder Jeffrey wa Jeffrey, has disclosed that she will contest to return her post at the forthcoming party convention disregarding the request for party administratrive secretary Francis Mphepo to step aside to allow former DPP secretary general and Speaker of National Assembly, Chimunthu Banda win the post.
DPP insiders told Nyasa Times that Mphepo had asked Jeffrey to allow Chimunthu take position unopposed .
However, Jeffrey said she is ready to compete on the position in order to continue serving the party ahead of May 2019 Tripartite elections.
“I am going to contest on my position as secretary general , its within my rights,” she said.
“The convention chair will have the information [on toehr contenders] and the media will be furnished on the same,” Jeffrey said.
Wa Jeffrey could not disclose the convention chairperson.
Mphepo has also reportedly told former DPP administrative secretary, Clement Mwale, to pave way for Chimunthu Banda.
Chimunthu Banda is also well educated with good political history and stability. He once served as secretary general of the DPP before he became Speaker of Parliament.
While Chimunthu Banda has a glittering political career, he is loathed within the DPP for allegedly conniving with former President Joyce Banda and her PP administration to prevent Peter Mutharika from becoming Leader of Opposition in Parliament.
“Chimunthu Banda competed against Mutharika at the DPP national convention in 2013 and lost. Full of bitterness, he announced that he retired from active politics. DPP membership would be at pains to elect someone who is retiring from retirement; who obviously still holds grudges against some sections of the party following his convention loss,” the party official opined.
The convention announcement also comes amid divisions in the governing party as some have openly opposed the candidature of incumbent President Mutharika at the convention and opted for the automatic takeover of vice president Saulos Chilima as the party’s torch bearer in next year’s elections while another section wants Mutharika to continue at the helm.
The Mutharika camp has through the media threatened to block the Chilima camp from attending the convention.
The set convention will be the third this year after that of the Malawi Congress Party (MCP) and the Alliance for Democracy (AFORD) which were marred by conflicts. The United Democratic Party (UDF) and the People’s Party (PP) are yet to announce dates for their conventions.(Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :