Malawi’s ruling People’s Party (PP) has extended an olive branch to main opposition block in the land Malawi Congress Party (MCP) in a bid to boost its parliamentary figures.
This followed a meeting the party’s vice president Khumbo Kachali held with MCP leader John Tembo Monday night at his official Area 12 residences that was also attended by senior officials from both camps.
According to our sources, PP has become nervous following the abrupt end of political camaraderie it enjoyed for the past seven months from opposition United Democratic Front (UDF) after the resignation of their party’s chairman and 2014 presidential standard Austin Atupele Muluzi from cabinet where he served as Economic Planning and Development Minister.
Meanwhile, according to state house sources Tembo has been enticed with political overtures as payback for his party’s support of PP led government which finds itself in minority with 80 legislators compared to 110 for the opposition parties.
“Yes, I can confirm. Khumbo Kachali met with MCP leaders in a bid to try and strike a deal on possible working relationship with the ruling party in parliament. In return, Tembo has been promised public appointments of his party officials into various departments including the cabinet,” confided a well placed source in the presidency.
Vice president’s press officer Kondwani Munthali could not be reached for comment.
But PP deputy spokesperson Ken Nsonda confirmed the meeting. However, he refused to divulge any details of the meeting.
“I heard about those reports, but as PP, our leadership does meet leaders of other political parties from time to time and there is no secret about that. So if the purported meeting was about cementing a working partnership in national assembly as you are putting it then it is a welcome development because it’s for the good of the nation,” said Nsonda.
Meanwhile, MCP spokesperson Tony Kandiero demanded for more time in order to consult with his bosses in Lilongwe.
Since the change of government in April this year, Tembo has enjoyed special favours from the Malawi leader Joyce Banda as evidenced by public appointments of his close family members.
“Despite meeting Tembo this time around, Kachali has long been resisting Tembo’s links to president Banda fearing for his running mate position” said government insiders.
“Kachali will do everything possible to ensure Tembo does not get space and be closer to the throne,” added the source.
The source also says another thron in MCP-PP working relationship is veteran politician Gwanda Chakuamba who is on “special contract” to support PP.
Chakuamba and Tembo are sworn-enemies.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :