The country’s celebrated and award winning musician, Lucius Banda has come out of his cocoon and declared interest to contest and reclaim Balaka North Parliamentary seat during the 2014 tripartite elections.
Banda lost the seat in August 2006 following a 21 months jail term met out by Zomba High Court – he later appealed but the conviction was sustained – on forgery of Malawi School Certificate of Education (MSCE) certificate, which was said he used as a qualification to contest in the 2004 Parliamentary elections.
Following his release from prison in November 2006, Banda has been silent on his political career until last year when he joined the ruling People’s Party (PP) only to quit it months later to re-join UDF the party that ushered him into Parliament.
In an interview with Nyasa Times, Banda who was co-opted into UDF’s National Executive Council (Nec), revealed that he
is more than ready to reclaim the position, which eluded his wife in 2009 elections.
The 42-year-old Banda said: “I can vehemently say that I am ready to contest next year. And it will be under UDF’s ticket. All I can say is that, I am well prepared to reclaim the seat”.
Banda, though, reluctant to his plans in readiness for the electoral campaign coming up soon, dispelled rumours connecting him going back to PP.
Reports have been rife ever since the official unveiling of controversial musician Wendy Harawa who joined PP last weekend that Banda has also retreated to the party in which he was merely accommodated when he joined.
“Any rumour linking me to PP is not true. I have never expressed any interest to re-join PP or attended any of their meetings. At this point I would like not to talk much about my political life,” said Banda.
He said is ready to continue where he stopped and urged the nation to rally behind UDF’s youthful candidate and president, Atupele Muluzi, adding “Malawians should expect a better UDF with visionary leader”.
Last year after quitting PP, Banda quashed out people’s suggestions that he had become a political prostitute by moving from one party to other, arguing “I am not like other political prostitutes who dumped their political parties to join the ruling party. I have made a rare and worth appreciating decision to join UDF which is in opposition”.
Lucius Banda has been critic of ruling political parties and their policies through his music that made him the first artist to have worn a brave face to criticize the tyrannical rule of first president, Dr. Hastings Kamuzu Banda.