President-elect for Malawi opposition’s Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), Prof Peter Mutharika, has hailed Speaker of Parliament Henry Chimunthu Banda for standing up to challenge him and said he is poised to take back government in 2014.
Mutharika was elected DPP President Thursday after overwhelmingly outclassing Banda by 1266 against 73 during the party’s first ever national convention held in Blantyre.
In his nine-minute acceptance speech, Mutharika thanked Chimunthu Banda for challenging him and making a good fight.
“You made a good fight and in the spirit of democracy I am glad you took part in the race.”
Mutharika thanked DPP convention delegates for his endorsement as the party’s torchbearer during Malawi’s 2014 tripartite elections.
“I am very, very humbled for the honour. It was a hard fought battle. I wasn’t sure that I was going to win but I am glad that I won,” he said.
Mutharika then called upon Chimunthu Banda and his supporters to render their support to him as they strive towards reclaiming government next year.
“May I call on you and your colleagues to join us…and I would like your supporters and mine to join together so that we unite and fight to make sure that in 2014 we get back the government,” he envisaged.
“I do accept the nomination as president of DPP; I do accept the nomination as presidential candidate in 2014. I can promise you that we will engage in a robust and vigorous campaign to make sure that we go back to Sanjika or Kamuzu Palace in 2014,” stated Mutharika.
The 72-year-old DPP leader the outlined a number of programmes which he said his government will embark on once elected into power.
Mutharika promised to promote policies that will bring greater benefit to poor people if voted into power, adoption of market economy system with emphasis on family enterprise, establishment of community colleges and reformation of the country’s tax system and company laws.
“Let me emphasise that when we come into power…I intend to introduce what we call people centered development policies. The emphasis will be on people not only on institutions.
“We will also overhaul the country’s economic system by reforming the taxi system, company laws and laws that make business difficult to make in this country,” he outlined.
On youths, Mutharika said he would create a conducive programme for them whereby they (and vendors) would be working during the day and attending community colleges in the evening and weekend.
At the colleges, he said the youths would be taught, among others, carpentry and joinery, welding, electrical and obtain associate degrees.
Mutharika also assured donors to stay in the country and help develop Malawi.
Talking on his electoral pledge, Mutharika promised access to HIV/Aids life prolonging ARV’s, better access to health care in Malawi once he takes over government.
He said once he gets into power, he will open Malawi University of Science and Technology at Ndata Farm constructed by China in Thyolo. He also said he will open the Nsanje Port.
Mutharika wrapped up his speech by assuring people that he is poised to take back government in 2014.
He faces incumbent Joyce Banda, UDF’s Atupele Muluzi and a candidate of MCP to be selected later this month.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :