President Peter Mutharika seems to have been sleeping on his job as ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) leader
It seems the youthful and ambitious but clever 45-year-old Vice-President Saulos Chilima has just awoken our president from a long slumber. Mutharika seems to have not woken up completely; he still looks as if he were feeling dizzy and day-dreaming.
If the DPP leader were awake on his job, he could realise, long ago, that there is a Chilima movement for presidency.
From a distance, atop a mountain, looking down the valley where the two elephant bulls are fiercely fighting, I can read from the Veep’s movements that the Chilima movement has been underground for quite a long time, only that the President could not detect it because he is sleeping on the job.
I am even afraid to get closer to the fight lest I be knocked down along with Chilima movement members.
It is very interesting that the State was busy snooping on a democratically elected opposition leader Lazarus Chakwera and arresting Malawi Congress Party (MCP) legislators on tramped-up charges of sedition.
For those in need of a little memory dosage; well, Jessie Kabwila, Peter Chakhwantha and Ulemu Msungama were arrested on allegations that they wanted to topple the Mutharika administration.
The security agents’ assessment and evidence was merely based on a WhatsApp chat-room group messages.
I am not sure whether the report the State acted on to arrest the innocent suspects came from the National Intelligence Bureau or the police but, wherever it came from, it was a very big goof.
I am, therefore, not surprised that the spies failed to sniff the birth of the Chilima movement right away in the corridors of power. This is but a clear indication that someone is sleeping on the job.
The networking and the coordination is a very clear indication that the Chilima movement has been there for a long time.
Now that Mutharika has woken up, he is unleashing the notorious DPP cadets to crack down on those supporting Chilima. This is just giving Chilima and his movement more energy, popularity and sympathy.
Now we hear the party has fired a committee of 120 DPP officials in Kasungu. This is absurdity of the highest order and senseless arrogance.
That is not the way political issues are dealt with in a democracy. It is political suicide to be firing people when other parties are luring the same people for votes ahead of the 2019 polls.
This shows that someone is misleading the ruling party.
This is not the right time to be firing people from the party. Stop it please. I would understand if the fired members were supporting Chakwera or any other opposition party but it is shocking that DPP is sacking members for supporting the party’s own members. This is ridiculous.
The sin these ordinary people of Kasungu committed was to support a member of DPP; not only an ordinary member but an adviser to the party.
This is crazy politics. I do not think that the only solution was to politically purge these poor souls who might not even understand what is going on between Mutharika and Chilima.
If the DPP leadership cannot handle intra-party democracy, how do we entrust these guys with our hard-won national democracy? I now fear for the future of my beloved Malawi.
I thought Malawi was in safe hands but I am becoming sceptical each passing day because of what is going on in the ruling DPP.
On the other hand, this sheer arrogance is not only displayed in the DPP but even in the government.
We are reading and hearing that Capital Hill has bought three luxurious vehicles for three Cabinet ministers costing the taxpayer K420 million at a time students sit on the floor when sitting for their examination.
My eroded confidence and trust in DPP can only be restored if I see some democratic steps being taken to bring sanity in the party.
First, Mutharika should be democratic enough to stop forthwith the use of cadets to intimidate Chilima movement members.
Secondly, the purging of members of the Chilima movement should be halted. This is counterproductive.
Chilima is part of DPP; therefore, his democratic rights of wishing to contest for party presidency should be respected.
Finally, Mutharika should meet Chilima to iron out their differences. Using some misguided traditional leaders or some “after money” politicians will not help matters at all.
Mutharika should know that he is the architect of the problems in DPP because he has been sleeping on the job.
If he were awake, he could follow the party constitution to the letter by calling for National Governing Council (NGC) meetings which would deal with the problems once and for all.
It is disheartening to hear that, since 2014, no NGC meeting had been held, which begs questions as to who is making decisions for the party? Is it from State House bedroom or a few buddies of the party leader?
Whichever the case, it looks like the frustrations and anger have been simmering for a long time.
NGC would have afforded the party an opportunity to hear the frustrations and anger and work upon them with speed.
It is not too late though. Chilima should be allowed to challenge the old man in a violence-free election; a free, fair and credible election; otherwise, sleeping on the job is retrogressive.
Otherwise, the intraparty squabbles in DPP are negatively affecting the running of the government because Mutharika and his Cabinet ministers’ focus is party problems.
They are doing this at the expense of national development and other issues.
These problems in DPP can only end if both Mutharika and Chilima and their respective warring faction supporters realise that they are not bigger than DPP; more so, they are not bigger than Malawi.
As I like saying, Malawi should always come first.
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