Senior leaders who recently dumped Alliance for Democracy (Aford) have joined UTM, saying Aford leadership has failed them.
Led by former Member of Parliament (MP) for Karonga Central Constituency Frank Mwenefumbo, the members said they have lost patience with the party’s underdemocratic tendancies.
Mwenefumbo and other members, who were welcomed by UTM publicity secretary Joseph Chidanti Malunga, said it is sad that the party, which participated in championing democracy in the country, has stayed for seven years without holding a convention.
The members said the party is run like a personal estate, adding that the National Executive Committee is powerless as all decisions are made by the president, Enock Chihana.
Mwenefumbo said he has joined UTM because the majority of people in the Northern Region, including his home constituency, supports UTM.
“I decided to leave Aford and join a party which can help me achieve my political goals,” Mwenefumbo said.
Malunga said Mwenefumbo and others from Aford will add value to the party, especially in the Northern Region.
Malunga said Mwenefumbo is an experienced politician, who once served as MP for Karonga Central for over 10 years and also as a cabinet minister.
“The UTM is happy to welcome Mwenefumbo. This is so because he is one of the high profile politicians that we need to be tapping advice from, if we want to grow as party. We are going to work with him and the entire team which has joined us,”Malunga said.
Aford Spokesperson, Khumbo Mwaungulu, claimed the defectors dumped the party because of greed.
The other members that have defected are National Party Chairman Gulani Guta, National Director of Women Mercy Mbezuma, secretary general Edward Christopher Ritchi and the three regional chairmen for South, Eastern and Central regions among others.