Much as the focus could be on Atupele Austin Muluzi resetting the political button at the United Democratic Front ( UDF) National Conference with his ‘new beginning’, reports emerging indicate that at the 1 August 2018 indaba will be highly competitive.
UDF spokesperson Ken Ndanga, said there were two people who expressed interest to challenge Muluzi but could not remember their names .
“One of them lives in Tanzania and the other one lives in South Africa,” he said,
Ndanga said it is mostly likely Muluzi will get a fresh mandate.
The only known contender for the UDF presidency, music icon Lucius Banda chickened out of the party presidential race and days after announcing his decision not to vie for the UDF presidency, he has joined the United Transformation Movement (UTM) and attended two of its rallies so far, and donned UTM memorabilia with the face of its leader Saulos Chilima.
But former cabinet minister during the Bakili Muluzi administration, Clement Stambuli will face a new kid on the block, Lilongwe business tycoon Mike Antoine on the position of vice president.
In the battle, Stambuli could use his long time connection with the grassroot in the party while Antione may flush a money strategy.
Another interesting battle is at the position of Publicity Secretary where the incumbent, Ken Ndanga is being challenged by Mangochi Nkungulu legislator, Aisha Adams.
Ndanga who in the recent years has been the face of UDF might use incumbency and track recording to retain the position but the lady might pull a surprise considering that politics can be unpredictable.
Former Electoral Commission commissioner, Charles Chikuwo is being challenged by Lance Mbewe on the position of Vice president for the South.
Another former Electoral Commoission commissioner Wellington Nakanga will be fighting against Mangochi Masongola parliamentarian, Rashid Pemba on finances post.
On the position of Deputy Campaign Director, it seems it is going to be all ladies fight with Parliamentarian, for Machinga East Esther Jolobala battling it out with Aisha Maundala.
There is no challenger yet for positions of Secretary General for the party where the incumbent, Kandi Padambo has declared interest to retain the position.
The National Conference is likely to give indication of the future of the UDF party which has been in a parliamentary relationship with the governing DPP.
Muluzi, who launched his presidential bid in 2014 with a youth-oriented Agenda for Change, said he wants “ a new beginning”.
Political commentator Ernest Thindwa said the UDF can do better if it creates a favourable political environment for all those wishing to view for positions should not be frustrated.
He said intraparty democracy should be practiced, not only talked about.
UDF will be the fourth party to hold a convention after the Alliance for Democracy (Aford), Malawi Congress Party (MCP) and Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) held theirs.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :