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DPP North committee endorses Mutharika

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By Samuel Kalimira

Former governing Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Northern Region Committee has become the latest section of the party to endorse its leader Peter Mutharika for the 2025 presidential election.

Recently, some DPP senior officials including Southern Regional Governor, Charles Mchacha, indicated that they would love Mutharika to lead the party.

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And the Northern Region Committee, which includes leaders from the district and constituency committees, disclosed their own endorsements at a meeting in Mzuzu yesterday.

Presenting a report to the party’s Treasurer- General, Jappie Mhango, DPP Northern Region Governor Ackim Mwanza claimed that some candidates who want to lead the party have been disrespectful to Mutharika.

Mwanza then said the region will accept and follow any direction Mutharika will guide on the party’s candidate in case he does not want to be on the ballot papers come 2025.

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“We don’t care about his age because the youthful leaders who Malawians trusted in the last elections have failed. People are saying it is better Mutharika should come back. That is why we are saying, as a regional committee, we want Mutharika again,” Mwanza said.

He said the decision is not aimed at undermining the scheduled 2023 convention, saying people can choose a leader of their choice.

Still, Mwanza insisted the Northern Region wants Mutharika to represent the party.

The committee has also endorsed Mhango to be the party’s vice-president for the Northern Region to replace Goodall Gondwe who said he will not seek re-election at the convention.

Reacting to the endorsement, Mhango indicated he will follow the decision of the committee, saying DPP belongs to the people and not leaders.

However, on Mutharika’s candidature, he said the party is getting views from its members and that it is up to Mutharika to make a decision.

“I am humbled that the people want me to lead them. They know that I am holding a very big position at national level but they want me to be here. Therefore, I will follow their decision because I am there to serve people,” Mhango said.

At the meeting, regional members also said they are comfortable with the current governor, Mwanza, saying he worked hard to strengthen the party when then-DPP governor Christopher Ngwira was in prison.

The DPP Northern Region Committee is preparing for a rally the party is scheduled to hold in the region on June 5.

Recently, some Malawi Congress Party (MCP) senior officials also endorsed the party’s leader Lazarus Chakwera for the 2025 presidential election.

The endorsement did not go down well with some members of the Tonse Alliance who wondered whether MCP had decided to leave the coalition, by fronting its leader.

Meanwhile, some political commentators have warned parties against the “early endorsements”, saying they are bad for intraparty democracy.

The commentators are of the view that other aspirants may find it difficult to compete at their parties’ elective conventions when those already with power have been endorsed by senior party officials.

Commenting on DPP’s endorsements, political analyst George Phiri said the sentiments would not only frustrate candidates that have expressed interest in contesting but would also frustrate the party’s followers.

There is speculation that DPP vice-president for the Southern Region Kondwani Nankhumwa and former Reserve Bank of Malawi governor Dalitso Kabambe want the lead the former governing party.

Others are Machinga Likwenu legislator Bright Msaka, Chiradzulu South Member of Parliament Joseph Mwanamvekha and Prophet David Mbewe.

 

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