UTM Party Vice President Michael Usi has appealed to the party supporters in Karonga Central constituency to remain clam even in the midst of provocation during the campaign for November 10 by-election.
Usi , who is also Minister of Tourism, Culture and Wildlife made the remarks at Chinsogholo ground at Lupembe in Karonga Central Constituency on Sunday during the campaign launch for its candidate Frank Tumpale Mwenifumbo.
Said Usi: “You see, Malawi is tired of political violence, hate speeches and lies. What we want now is development and we cannot achieve meaningful development if we are not united.”
Usi further asked his party supporters to desist from political violence.
“This is not time for the dark ages but time for light in order for the country to develop,” he said.
Nicknamed ‘Benghazi’ after a time-honoured battlefield in Libya, the shoreline in Karonga has become a conflict zone since 2009 when Cornelius Mwalwanda Frank Mwenifumbo had their first-ever face-off in parliamentary poll.
In her remarks, the party’s secretary general Patricia Kaliati said UTM is founded on four values of love, respect, peace and unity and appealed for issue-based politics in the area.
“As a party, we will not hit back at those using foul language against us, neither will we fight back. Let us hit back on November 10 through the ballot so that we should have functional health services in the constituency and have three meals a day. And for that to happen, vote for Frank Mwenifumbo,” Kaliati said.
On his part, Mwenifumbo promised to conduct an issue-based campaign.
He parted himself on the back, saying during his time as the area’s Parliamentarian he initiated a number of developments such as electricity in all trading centres and portable water through boreholes whose figure rose from 50 in 1999 to what he said is now a boastful figure on the data index of the whole Malawi.
He said: “When I joined politics in 1999, the constituency had no health centre. During my tenure as a Parliamentarian, I have brought four health centres of Katili, Mlare, Mwenilondo and Lupembe because at a time I became an MP, Lupembe health centre was closed.”
The campaign launch was graced by among others, regional governor for the north Moses Malunga, deputy publicity secretary Chrissie Kanyasho, Nancy Mdooko, director of research and strategic planning Norman Nyirenda, deputy campaign director Mwakwenda Chunga, regional director of women Bridget Nkhoma and a number of Members of Parliament.
Five candidates are contesting in the constituency. They are Malawi Congress Party (MCP) Leonard Mwalwanda, Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Ernest Mwalughali, Mbakuwaku Movement for Democracy (MMD) Nellie Sichali and independent candidate Mary Florence Nthakomwa.
Karonga Central fell vacant following the death of Cornelius Mwalwanda.
The November 10 by-election will also take place in Mangochi West, Mangochi North East, Phalombe North, Lilongwe North West and a Local Government election in Makhuwira Ward in Chikwawa East.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :