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No sign in sight for People’s Party convention

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The People’s Party (PP) has said dates for its convention can only be determined by the party itself and that activities in other parties, some of which are preparing for conventions, will not push it to do the same.

In line with the party’s constitution, PP was supposed to hold a convention to replace members of the National Executive Committee (Nec), which came into being in August 2012.

However, the convention did not take place.

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PP spokesperson, Noah Chimpeni, said yesterday that it is not true that the party failed to hold a convention in 2017, adding that the party did not plan to do so.

“We are not other parties, we are People’s Party and, therefore, we have our own calendar of events. We cannot say just because MCP [Malawi Congress Party) and DPP [Democratic Progressive Party] have set aside dates for their conventions, let us also do the same. When we are ready, we will let our members know that we are ready,” he said.

He said, before any party decides to hold a convention, structures are supposed to be organised and financial resources have to be mobilised.

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The publicist said this is what is happening in the party.

But political scientist Wonderful Mkutche said the party’s failure to stick to provisions of its constitution spells doom for democracy, which relies on political parties to supply leaders as heads of State and Government.

Mkutche said one of the issues rocking the party is that it is serving its leader Joyce Banda, who is in self-imposed exile.

“It would be possible for them to choose a presidential candidate and sell that candidate for [the sake of] 2019 [elections]. But the party’s failure to be clear on the convention is a sign that the party is not ready for [elections in] 2019,” Mkutche said.

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