Malawi Congress Party (MCP) national executive committee meeting in Lilongwe on Friday night agreed to have talks with UTM Party team on a possible electoral alliance for the forthcoming first ever Malawi fresh elections but with a condition that MCP presidential hopeful Lazarus Chakwera be torch bearer.
MCP executive members pointed out that the party is already in an alliance with People’s Party (PP) of former president Joyce Banda and Freddom Party of former vice-president Khumbo Kachali.
Chakwera is torch bearer of this alliance with Sidik Mia, the MCP first deputy president as his running mate.
MCP members welcomed the move to include UTM Party of State vice-president Saulos Chilima in the alliance to enhance their chances of winning the 50-plus-one majority threshold as required by the law to avoid a run-off.
Spokesperson of MCP, Reverend Maurice Munthali said the party passed a resolution that gives Chakwera “ full powers to constitute a qualified team to support his pursuit of an alliance through negotiations with the UTM team designated for that purpose.”
Reads a statement issued by MCP: “Pursuant to Article 3(12) of the Constitution of Malawi Congress Party on the need to work with other political parties with which MCP shares ‘a common vision’, the MCP National Executive Committee (NEC) passed a resolution at its meeting of February 28th, 2020, giving the President, Dr. Lazarus Chakwera, full powers to enter negotiations with his UTM counterpart on the prospect of an alliance between the two parties.
“Premised on the same constitutional provision, MCP entered into a mutual working relationship with the People’s Party and Freedom Party prior to, during and beyond the 2019 tripartite elections.”
Munthali explained in the statement that Chakwera has been given the mandate to ascertain such terms of an alliance agreement as will be most beneficial for Malawi and its people.
“The MCP NEC believes that empowering the party president with this mission is the best way to harness the national gains that both parties have cultivated together with all patriotic Malawians over the last eight months in which the whole nation fixed its gaze on the Constitutional Court where the MCP and UTM presidents were both petitioners.
“Knowing that the court case was a fight for justice and the political rights of every voter aggrieved by MEC’s mismanagement of the 2019 presidential election, the MCP NEC is confident that the negotiations with UTM will be conducted in good faith and bear fruit to help galvanize the majority of the electorate towards victory and lasting change in the fresh elections scheduled for Tuesday, 19th May 2020,” reads the statement in part.
Munthali said the resolution conforms to the MCP’s well-established value of contact and dialogue, its inimitable sensitivity to the aspirations of Malawians, and its quest for a mew Malawi marked by efforts at “Uniting Malawians” as enshrined in the second pillar of the “Chakwera Super Hi-5.”
The MCP leader and Chilima were putting a united front in their court appearances during the presidential election petition case hearing, and they both endorsed the Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC)-led protests against the elections’ outcome, sometimes joining in the demonstrations.
Political analyst Henry Chingaipe has said an alliance between MCP and UTM Party should have been done long ago but it did not happen “because of egos”.
Chingaipe added that unity of purpose among political elites at a certain level has some chance of creating real unity among supporters of the various parties.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :