Malawi’s Mwanza Central Member of Parliament and president of the Chipani Cha Pfuko (CCP) Davies Katsonga has applied to the Speaker of the National Assembly to have him moved from the opposition to join the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) on the government side.
Katsonga was one of the 12 presidential contestants in the May 20 Tripartite Elections and is a lone MP from his party which also won just one seat in the councillorship.
Speaker Richard Msowoya has since allocated Katsonga a seat on the government side where he moved to when the House resumed sitting on Monday afternoon.
This means that the DPP now has a total of 70 MPs while the MCP still maintains its 52.
At the start of the sitting of the 19 independent members joined the DPP to push the figure to 69 from the earlier 50 which they got at the polls while MCP got four from the independents benches to push its numbers up from the initial 48.
The independents who joined the DPP include: Peter Hamiton Bvalani MP for Zomba Likangala, Daudi Abiyani Chida MP for Mulanje Limburi, Abdul Rashid Gaffer MP for Blantyre Kabula, Sam Ganda MP for Nsanje Lalanje, Willet Karonga MP for Chiradzulu North, Gabu Bob Khamisa MP for Thyolo Central. Mary Maulidi Khembo MP for Neno South and Naomi Maleso Akilekwa Phiri MP for Mulanje South East.
Others are Mary Connic Livuza Mpanda MP for Mphalombe South, Emmanuel Hirario Lozo MP for Neno North, Amos Mailosi MP for Mphalombe East, Victor Musowa MP for Mulanje Bale, Aboo McNice Naliwa MP for Zomba Nsondole, Dennis Namachekecha MP for Mphalombe North-East, Allan Ngumuya MP for Blantyre City South, Muhammad Hanis Osman MP for Chiradzulu Central, McJay Salijeni MP for Thyolo South, Rodger Sithole
MP for Kasungu North-North East and Lyana Lexa Tambala MP for Mulanje North.
While MCP’s new MPs included Collins Kajawa for Lilongwe Mpenu Nkhoma, Peter Chakwantha for Lilongwe South West, Peter Dimba for Lilongwe South and Elias Chakwera for Dowa Ngala.
As of Monday the former ruling People’s Party (PP) maintained its 26 members, the United Democratic Front (UDF) has now 13 following the shift of its President Atupele Muluzi to the government side as a cabinet minister, and the Alliance for Democracy (Aford) has one.