Over 600 people on Likoma Island this week defected to the Malawi Congress Party (MCP) from the ruling Democratic Progress Party (DPP), People’s Party (PP) and other political parties.
MCP North-South regional committee members welcomed the defectors during a series of meetings they conducted on the island within last week.
Speaking in an interview with The Sunday Times, MCP North- South Deputy Regional Chairman, Gracious Soko, said the majority of the defectors have dumped the DPP.
“We have welcomed them whole heartedly and we are going to work with them not as new members but as any other MCP member. Remember that our President, Lazarus Chakwera, told us to open the doors of the party and that is the reasons we are receiving many people on daily basis.
“We are sure that Likoma and Chizumulu Islands will give more votes to Chakwera. We came to set the ground and we are happy that people already realised that it is only MCP that has the key to development,” Soko said.
However, DPP Regional Governor for the North, Kenneth Sanga, said he has not received any report about the defections of his members to MCP.
He said DPP has strong structures on both Likoma and Chizumulu Islands that are working on the ground ensuring that the DPP remains strong.
“People cannot be joining MCP now. They are already done with the party,” Sanga said.
On his part, PP spokesperson, Noah Chimpeni, said the party is not worried with the defections arguing, people claim to be PP while they are not.
Soko said their trip to Likoma has shaken DPP because people have decided to vote for development and not handouts come 2019.
“Almost all days we spent on the island were rainy, but this did not stop people from gracing our meetings. We came to verify our structures and encourage the leaders but we were forced to be conducting rallies. Remember 98 percent of the developments here were done during MCP regime,” Soko said.
Likoma and Chizumulu Islands have a voter population of about 15,000. It is currently represented by a DPP Member of Parliament.
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