PP top brass tumble in parliamentary polls

Unofficial results of the May 20 parliamentary polls trickling in dribs and drabs show that several former members of the President Joyce Banda’s People’s Party (PP) executive have performed poorly, with one – Godfrey Kanyama – shooting himself dead after a shoddy performance to regain his Lilongwe Msodzi North Constituency.

Kanyama, a former deputy minister of local government in the Joyce Banda government, died in the wee hours of Thursday at his Area 10 residence in Malawi’s capital Lilongwe and left suicide note.

Perhaps chief of the losses on the side of PP is that of Sosten Gwengwe, Banda’s running mate, who lost to Malawi Congress Party (MCP) candidate in Dedza.

Anita Kalinde: Lost
Anita Kalinde: Lost

Moses Kunkuyu – former government spokesperson – also lost out in the same district.

“They can’t make it,” Nyasa Times correspondent in Dedza said. “MCP candidates have triumphed over them, and the remaining centres will not bring much difference.”

Ironically, Khumbo Hastings Kachali, former state vice president, – whom Banda dumped as running mate before settling for Gwengwe – retained his Mzimba South West Constituency.

Kachali announced about a week ago that he had ditched PP and rejoined the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) – a party which two years ago had booted them out of the party for allegedly “forming parallel structures” after they had refused to endorse late President Bingu wa Mutharika’s young brother Peter Mutharika as DPP’s presidential candidate for the May 20 tripartite elections.

Banda formed her own party, PP, and became Malawi’s leader in line with constitutional order after Bingu’s sudden death of cardiac arrest on April 5, 2012.

Other former members of Banda’s government headed for a fall include Fahad Assani (Justice Minister), Chris Daza (Good Governance Minister), Anita Kalinde (Water Development and Irrigation Minister), Ken Edward Kandodo (Defence Minister), Halima Daudi (Environment Minister), Ralph Jooma (Economic Planning Minister), Brown Mpinganjira (Information Minister – after Kunkuyu), Jermoth Chilapondwa (Deputy Transport Minister) and Abel Kayembe (Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister).

Dr. Cornelius Mwalwanda (Deputy Minister) lost out to Frank Mwenifumbo in Karonga Central Constituency.
Mwenifumbo, PP deputy secretary general, was expelled from the party for his decision to contest Mwalwanda after he had lost out in primaries.

Also, Chikumbutso Hiwa (Deputy Minister of Health) and Agness Mandevu Chatipwa (Deputy Minister of Education are poised to fall.

The Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) said it is going to delay the release of the results so that they work their best of the May 20 tripartite election regarded the tightest since the dawn of democracy in Malawi.

According to the law, make is supposed to make an official announcement of the results within seven days.

There is a neck-to-neck competition between opposition DPP Mutharika and MCP’s Lazarus Chakwera, according to unofficial results cited by the local radios.

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