Opposition Malawi Congress Party (MCP) secretary general Chris Daza says he will fight tooth and nail to block his party president John Tembo to seek amendment to the MCP constitution paving way for his third-time lucky in the presidential race.
Daza said Tembo, the 78-year-old veteran politician, is barred by the party constitution to contest for the presidency under the MCP ticket for the consecutive third time.
“The MCP constitution is clear; the president of Malawi Congress Party will represent the party [in the presidential elections] twice. Our president has done that already,” said Daza during Capital FM Straigh Talk programme on Thursday night.
“It’s clear that the president [Tembo] cannot stand.”
Daza – Tembo’s favourite henchman until he fell victim to vicious political in-fighting – said he will fight to ensure the party constitution is not amended in favour of Tembo.
“Why do you want to change the constitution just to accommodate one person. The party is owned by the people. How can the country trust us if we cannot defend our constitution,” said Daza,
The MCP secretary general stressed that Tembo cannot seek a third term lucky.
“I am standing by the constitution. We need to abide by the constitution. Our constitution is very very clear,” he said,
“President of any party cannot be a personal position. We don’t have life presidency. Everybody can be replaced,” Daza said.
Daza described himself as “greatest contender” for MCP leadership at the forthcoming party convention.
“Being president of the party is about leadership skills, which I think I have achieved not only by studying but being trained on the ground,” he said, adding “Those that think that I am fighting losing battle are here for a surprise.”
Daza said he want to revamp MCP and bring in younger blood.
The party, he said, needed to “open up, reach out and catch up”.
Tembo is however on record saying the issue on whether the constitution is to be amended to allow his candidature in 2014 will be decided at the convention.
The veteran politician hinted that he might run in the 2014 elections if the party nominated him as presidential candidate, arguing that constitution is a living document which is subject to be amended by party members at a convention.
The MCP president has failed in his presidential bid twice, in 2004 and 2009.
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