Malawi Congress Party (MCP) president John Tembo has declared that he is ready to retire from front-line politics and pave way for a new leader to guide the party to 2014 three-tier polls, Nyasa Times understands.
MCP sources say Tembo has hinted to party inner circle that the party national convention slated for early next year should open up leadership contest and that he will not seek amendment of the constitution to allow him contest for third-time lucky on the presidency.
There have been fevered speculation that Tembo would seek fresh mandate from MCP members to be its presidential candidate because he has not accomplished his mission to rule the country.
However, reliable sources have said Tembo, who is also Leader of Opposition, is “going to voluntarirly handover the MCP presidency”.
The party will however give him a new role of “patron”.
Nyasa Times understands that five MCP politicians are repositioning themselves for the presidency.
They include former Speaker of Parliament, Louis Chimango, lawmakers Joseph Njobvuyalema, Makala Ngozo, party publicist a former diplomat Tony Kandiero, Jodder Kanjere and party secretary general Chris Daza.
Nyasa Times sources within the party’s ranks and files have revealed that Chimango is likely to get the nod at the convention.
Chimango when contacted said he does not “respond to mere speculations.”
A former finance minister in one party state and a fomrley a law professor at University of Malawi, Chimango is being favoured by party gurus to maintain MCP four cornerstones – unity, loyalty, obedience and discipline.