Political analysts have said they can foresee the United Democratic Front (UDF) and Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) forming an electoral alliance in the May 2019 Tripartite Elections after enjoying a healthy working relationship in Parliament for four years.
Governance expert and political commentator Makhumbo Munthali said after analysing the speech of former president Bakili Muluzi to the UDF convention at Comesa Hall in Blantyre on Wednesday, where he asked politicians to respect President Peter Mutharika, the likelihood of DPP and UDF forging an electoral alliance in 2019 is high.
“The remarks made by the former president Bakili Muluzi may indirectly signal the possibility of a DPP-UDF electoral alliance. With the United Transformation Movement (UTM) led by vice-president Saulos Chilima and Malawi Congress Party ( MCP) as seemingly its main challengers, DPP cannot afford to go into the next election single handedly. And for no doubt UDF would be in the current circumstances the first choice so that they consolidate the Southern region vote,” he said.
Munthali noted that Muluzi’s indirect attack on UTM may as well rule out any possibility of a UTM-UDF alliance as some had speculated.
“Its important to note that Bakili Muluzi is an influential figure in UDF politics, and it is obvious that the UDF leader Atupele Muluzi cannot make any political decision on the future of the party which is not in the interest of his father. In short, Muluzi dictates- behind the scenes- who the party should enter into an alliance with, and his statements made should not just be easily dismissed,” he said.
In his address, Muluzi appealed to politicians against abusing the spirit of multiparty democracy as that is destroying the country.
He also urged people to exercise their democratic rights with responsibility and respect their leaders.
Said Muluzi: “Please do not destroy this country because of politics. This is the only country we have. Should we destroy it because of politics? Multiparty should not destroy this country.
“Whether mlamu [in-law] or not, you cannot stand on the podium and call your President mtchona.”
During his presidency from 1994 to 2004, Muluzi himself is on record to have spoken ill of other politicians.
Political analyst Ernest Thindwa said the UDF and DPP are likely to have developed an electoral relationship outside the working relationship they have inside Parliament.
The two parties have already tries an electoral deal as in the April 10 by-elections, the governing DPP did not feature a candidate in Malindi Ward in Mangochi North East Constituency to give chance to UDF while the UDF did not contest the Milonde Ward by-election in Mulanje South East Constituency. DPP’s Mike Skinner won Milonde Ward while UDF’s Kassim Limamu claimed Malindi Ward.
DPP secretary general Greselder Jeffrey said the party’s working relationship with UDF remains strong.
While Atupele Muluzi, who is Minister of Health in President Peter Mutharika’s Cabinet, said the new UDF executive committee will soon come in the open on its position and future.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :