PP in crisis meet over Jooma, Matola disputed results: Chikwemba rejects defeat

The ruling Peoples Party (PP) officials on Sunday called for  AN impromptu “crisis” meeting at Sun and Sand Hotel  in lakeshore resorts district of Mangochi over disputed primary elections results in Eastern region especially Mangochi-MonkeyBay and Mangochi North constituencies.

The officials who were responsible to oversee the primary elections in the Eastern region called for the meeting at the hotel where the party set-up its tally centre after strong revealing reports indicate the primary elections were not free, fair and credible.

Faces in the panel include Clara Makungwa, PP Secretary General Paul Maulidi and his deputy Ireen Chikuni among others.

The party intends to resolve disputes between PP’s Publicity Secretary, Hophmary Makande and Minister of Economic Planning, Ralph Pachalo Jooma who faced each other in MonkeyBay.

Makande: More favoured by the constituents than Jooma
Makande: More favoured by the constituents than Jooma

Another issue is about Energy Minister, Ibrahim Matole who contested against Benedicto Chambo in Mangochi North as well as results from Mangochi East, Mangochi North East and Mangochi West Constituencies.

Unofficial results from the party’s tally centre indicate that Jooma obtained more votes against Makande while Chambo triumphed against Matola.

One of the party’s senior officials told Nyasa Times, the meeting has been called to mediate dispute between concerned contestants in a bid to protect the party’s image and avoid create divisions once losing individuals decide to quit.

“The reports we gathered and incidents witnessed by our team, clearly indicate that the two (Jooma and Chambo) won but those who lost are prominent faces who will reduce supporter-base once they decide to stand independent,” explained the official.

The official said among other raised anormallies were vote rigging, interference by the affected camps with voting process and multiple voting by the voters.

“People in some areas were intimidated or stopped from voting. And in some centres voting was even called off.. The concerned individuals also tempered with ballot boxes, which put the results in dispute”.

The party disciplinary hearing is expected to resolve the cases but there is a possibility of a re-run or voting to be extended today Sunday in some polling centres in the said constituencies.

However, the official revealed that as one way of resolving the matter, President Joyce Banda has offered to award diplomatic positions to the losing camps to avoid massive defection from the party.

“This is what we have suggested to the President, and even those concerned have been notified about our offers of being sent to work as diplomat at one of the Embassies, or might be offered good positions in government,” added the official.

Meanwhile, PP deputy administrative secretary, Joseph Chikwemba has refused to accept defeat and is contesting against Zomba Central results after being trounced  by Patricia Kainga.

Chikwemba strongly believes the results will be overturned in his favour, saying “ Party Electoral officials will make final decision. People are celebrating for my victory because that’s what they expected. “

According to Chikwemba he is a president’s favoured candidate and come what may, he will represent the PP in Zomba central.

Currently unofficial results from other constituencies show that deputy Minister of Education, Chikumbutso Hiwa has been defeated by Naomi Chidiwa in Ntcheu West.

Chidiwa got 2, 506 votes against Hiwa’s 2, 219 votes.

Minister of Labour, Grace Maseko has conceded defeat to John Chikalimba in Zomba Changalume Constituency.

In Mangochi Central Reverend Macdonard Sembereka won by 2,426 votes against Mr. Tchuwa’s 1,616 votes.

Minister responsible for Good Governance, Chris Daza has outclassed deputy speaker of Parliament, Jones Chingola in Ntcheu Central Constituency.

Unofficial results Nyasa Times obtained revealed that Daza emassed 1,596 votes against Chingola’s 1,311 votes. Several PP incumbent MPs such as Bauleni Manna for Dowa East, Agnes Penemulungu for Lilongwe City South East and Edwin Bagwanji of Lilongwe City West have also lost to new faces on the political scene.

The party is holding primaries in Eastern regions before moving to Southern region next week.

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