United Democratic Front (UDF) says it regrets several misleading statements made against the party by Balaka North Member of Parliament (MP) Lucius Banda in the media in the recent times.
Party spokesman Ken Ndanga was reacting to Banda’s attack to President Peter Mutharika over remarks on Saturday when he said the UDF and his Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) alliance would continue despite opposition from “one misguided” MP.
Banda accused President Mutharika of being “misguided and ill-advised”.
He also claimed that as a UDF MP and the party’s leader in the House at the time the coalition was agreed upon, he had never seen or been presented with a signed document cementing a working union between the DPP and UDF.
But UDF spokesman Ndanga has said Banda is walking away from the truth, saying he was party to the birth of the two political parties’ working relationship.
“It is a fact that Hon. Lucius Banda, was involved in all the decisions and discussions that led to the current working relationship between the UDF party and the Democratic Progressive Party, DPP,” Ndanga said in a statement made available to Nyasa Times.
He said Banda accepted to be leader of the UDF in parliament with the support of the party president, Atupele Muluzi.
“It should be noted that this is not an elected position but one appointed by the leader of the party. His acceptance of the role was a clear indication of his understanding and support of the relationship with the DPP, despite his choice to remain in the opposition benches,” Ndanga said.
He said the UDF as party has tolerated the” increasingly disruptive and conduct” of Banda, in the spirit of democracy and the core principles of the party.
“His continued negative comments to the media against his own party cannot further be tolerated being a member of the National Executive Committee of the party.
“His statements against the party and its leadership in the media have the potential to bring disunity in the party which is very unfortunate,” Ndanga said.
UDF said the distorted perspective that he offered about the relationship between the UDF and the DPP appears to be “simply cheap political advantage.”
Ndanga said UDF having accepted Banda back into the party following his foray with the People’s Party, the parliamentarian “has no moral ground to suggest that he is more UDF that the many members who have remained loyal to the party since its inception. “
Reads the statement: “The UDF’s support of Hon. Lucius Banda has been unbending and as such the party is saddened by these events.
The party therefore, humbly advises Hon.Lucius Banda, to be honest and sincere remembering that he is a servant of his constituency and the party.”
The party said it will always open its doors for Banda to present his grievances to the party by “observing decorum” as opposed to the media.
“The UDF party shall then make appropriate decisions on the same,” Ndanga said.
UDF said it will continue with the critical work of rebuilding a strong and united party.
Party secretary general Kandi Padambo also insisted that the DPP-UDF coalition still existed.
But Banda laughed off the UDF statement, saying it was a joke as he was informed during the party caucus of an already made decision.
He is defiant, saying President Mutharika should desist from commenting on two political parties’ working relationship because it does not exist “lest he is exposed as someone who is misguided, disillusioned and deluded.”
He slammed Mutharika for addressing a non-issue instead of talking about matters that people are concerned about.
“For example, the President should have told the people of Mangochi about what his government is doing about the case of Mangochi’s favourite son Issa Njaunju who was brutally and mercilessly murdered in the line of duty while serving in the President’s administration.
“Or, the President should have updated the people on how his government intends to revive the Greenbelt Initiative, of which Mangochi was supposed to be a primary beneficiary. There are more many key issues that the President could, and should have addressed in Mangochi other than the fantasy that is the DPP/UDF Coalition,” Banda said.
Banda has refused to be part of the coalition since its inception, describing it “unreasonable.”Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :