‘UDF, DPP alliance won’t affect convention’


The United Democratic Front (UDF) has said the party’s alliance with the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) will not affect the party’s convention scheduled for the first quarter of this year.
UDF spokesperson, Ken Ndanga, said in an interview yesterday that the alliance is only in Parliament and that the party’s constitution provides for the holding of a convention.
UDF and DPP union stretches back to the tripartite elections of 2014, when President Peter Mutharika gave UDF leader Atupele Muluzi a ministerial post.
But Ndanga said their alliance has nothing to do with the parties’ affairs outside Parliament; hence, plans to hold a convention which will elect the party’s torch-bearers in 2019 tripartite elections are still intact.
“It is a constitutional mandate for us to hold a convention and there is nothing to stop us from holding such an important meeting. We are under obligation to hold it. The alliance that is there with DPP is only in Parliament,” Ndanga said.
However, Ndanga said the party’s National Executive Committee is yet to choose members of a convention committee to manage the convention.
“The committee that will be set up will be responsible for, among other things, setting up dates for the convention, place as well as organising nomination papers. So, in principle, we will hold the convention any day during the first quarter of this year,” he said.
Apart from the UDF, the ruling DPP is in a working relationship with some People’s Party’s (PP) Members of Parliament (MPs).
Recently, PP spokesperson, Noah Chimpeni, disputed reports of a working relationship with the DPP.
Chimpeni said MPs who sided with DPP in Parliament during the recent debate on Electoral Reforms [Amendment] Bills did so as individuals. not a representation of the party’s stand.

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