The gist of a political alliance, however big or small, is that all parties submit to a common route taking them to a set destination.
In the case of opposition Tonse Alliance, being led by Malawi Congress Party (MCP) presidential hopeful Lazarus Chakwera, their set destination, according to them, is to remove the incumbent government from power.
To achieve this, nine parties to Tonse Alliance have agreed to run an issue-based campaign solely meant to move Malawians to vote for them not based on tribe, religion, class and region.
Unfortunately, the question of issue-based campaign is not the message you got if you followed Tonse Alliance televised Njamba Park mass rally in Blantyre on Monday .
What you got was a highly charged gathering infuriated with long and boring speeches without a central theme connecting them together.
Further, one also got a feeling that the question of sharing power, senior posts and privileges, once after getting power, is so core to Tonse Alliance.
Let me, analyze key speakers, break it for you.
MCP secretary general Eisenhower Mkaka came to disassociate Kamuzu Banda’s MCP from those historical human rights atrocities.
In his stinging message, coloured by precise examples, Mkaka underlined that politicians behind MCP historical atrocities joined DPP.
Patricia Kaliati, UTM secretary general, came to spew vulgar at the country’s first lady, Getrude Mutharika, for warning people against bringing back MCP to power. She said the First Lady must get out of State House because it was MCP regime that built it. Further, Kaliati also attacked the ruling DPP – the party she served before jumping ship – saying they are selling an invisible candidate, Peter Mutharika.
Saulos Chilima, UTM president and Tonse Alliance vice-president, came to Njamba Park to respond to a series of personal attacks from Cabinet minister Everton Chimulirenji.
His vitriol speech, spoken in disparage and anger, stopped at ridiculing the disgraced Chimulirenji, specifically reminding him that he won’t, at any period in history, be remembered as a vice-president.
Then Timothy Mtambo, the self-styled ‘commander-in-chief’ concentrated on defining etiquettes of good leadership based on religious principles. Using scriptures, he underlined that Malawi’s leadership needs a compassionate leader, one who listens to people when they are crying.
Chakwera, on the hand, concentrated on what the Alliance will do once in power. He articulated the principles of his leadership and, with Tonse Alliance, how they rescue Malawi from the failed incumbency.
The question, now, is: If you followed the rally at Njamba, what was the common message from Tonse Alliance?
The sharp ones, of course, would say that Chakwera and Mtambo hit it all home. Quite true for the two, arguably, dwelt so much on issues.
But Tonse Alliance is not just Chakwera and Mtambo. It is the whole lot.
What is underlying in Tonse Alliance is that they will run an issue-based campaign, free from attacks and vendettas. Again, they will send a common message of hope and encouragement. In other words, Tonse Alliance symbolizes a new beginning for Malawi.
But the incoherent messages that came from Njamba on Monday don’t inspire an inch of hope.
It appears parties to this alliance have come with personal issues to score at the expense of the public. That is why there is too much interest, in this alliance, regarding sharing State spoils and privileges once in power.
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