United Democratic Front (UDF) has resolved to introduce party membership cards as way of generating funds and establish membership, a senior official has confirmed.
Party publicist Ken Ndanga also said the party is reviewing the way it conducts primary elections in a bid to improve it.
“We want to find out how many members we have, we want to have sustainable ways of raising money for the party instead of relying on a few individuals,” said Ndanga.
It is believed that the Muluzi family bankrolls activities of the party.
UDF campaigned against forced party membership in the run up to the 1994 general election, the first multiparty election since 1965 but Ndanga said the forced party cards during the Malawi Congress Party (MCP) one party system is different from the one the UDF want to embark on as it will be voluntary.
Chancellor College political analyst Joseph Chunga described the move as a welcome development, saying party members will feel ownership of the party.
“Ordinary members should have means of contributing to their party,” he said.
The UDF was the ruling party in Malawi from 1994 to 2004 under President Bakili Muluzi. In 2005, former president Bingu wa Mutharika dumped the UDF, a party that sponsored him into power accusing the party of high level corruption. Later, Mutharika formed the Democratic Progressive Party and arrested his handpicked predecessor Bakili Muluzi.
UDF is now in a political working relationship with DPP with the party president Atupele Muluzi serving in the cabinet of President Peter Mutharika.