Former finance minister Friday Jumbe who led a faction in United Democratic Front (UDF) have been welcomed to join Malawi’s ruling People’s Party (PP) .
Jumbe has jumped ship together with former Speaker of Parliament, Sam Mpasu and ex-envoy Ziliro Chibambo.
PP sources said they welcomed the trio on Sunday evening before the party held its national convention in the commercial city of Blantyre on Monday.
“PP has welcomed Friday Jumbe, Ziliro Chibambo and Sam Mpasu,” said a top official.
UDF secretary general Kennedy Makwangwala said the party was aware that the Jumbe faction has “defected enmasse to PP”.
Makwangwala described the defection as “good riddance.”
UDF was divided into two factions when George Nga Ntafu declared himself leader of the party deposing Jumbe, and then led a group campaigning for Atupele, who is son of former president Bakili Muluzi, to become its presidential candidate. Atupele is currently Ministry of Economic Planning and Development in President Joyce Banda’s cabinet.
UDF ruled Malawi from1994 to 2004 under Bakili Muluzi as President. His handpicked successor Bingu wa Mutharika won the Presidency under UDF ticket but later dumped the party to form his DPP in 2006.
Meanwhile, human rights lawyer and political activist Viva Nyimba has also joined PP, Nyasa Times learnt.