Malawi President Peter Mutharika has said the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) and minor opposition, the United Democratic Front (UDF) will continue despite strong opposition from one member of parliament.
Mutharika said this on Saturday in Mangochi after UDF women danced for him at a function to mark the official opening of Mangochi Community College.
“We will continue with this alliance. It is only one MP who doesn’t want this alliance, he is misguided,” said Mutharika.
It was an indirect reference to Lucius Banda, a UDF member of parliament in Balaka who has constantly attacked party president Atupele Muluzi of selling his party to the DPP, saying the alliance arrangement is not benefitting ordinary UDF supporters except for Muluzi who is minister of Lands and Housing in the Mutharika cabinet.
Lucius Banda was not immediately available for comment.
However, Mutharika did not say whether the DPP and UDF will work together during the 2019 general election, on whether Muluzi will give up his contest for the presidency in support of Mutharika’s candidature.
Mutharika’s comments come at a time when the UDF is under intense pressure from supporters to pull out of the alliance in readiness for the 2019 general election.
UDF publicist Ken Ndanga said recently on FaceBook the issue would be decided by the party executive committee.
Muluzi, who attended the Mangochi function, has of late been holding rallies in Mangochi and Chikhwawa which drew large crowds.