By Tom Likambale
Some people have asked me my position as far as Malawi’s current politics is concerned, especially in light of recent events which will culminate in a new presidential election this June 23rd. I believe I owe my friends and loved ones an honest and sincere answer.
I have been a United Democratic Front (UDF) member since the party’s birth and was against the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) since its own inception. I hated former President Bingu wa Mutharika’s double-crossing of previous President Bakili Muluzi.
I also hated Bingu’s own hatred of myself and my family. In addition, I disdained the “Midnight 6” incident — among others. All this (and more) meant that I was a sworn opponent of DPP, I believed, forever.
I was in shock and disbelief when DPP won the 2014 polls. I had expected, and hoped, that former President Joyce Banda would forever vanquish the DPP to political oblivion where it belonged. Well, she did not, and I have spent a lot of time since then regretting it.
All this being said, you may be asking where I stand now……..
It is simple: I was disgusted by the role the Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC), Malawi Congress Party (MCP) and UTM played in violent demonstrations for the past 11 months. By contrast,
I was charmed by the patience and forbearance President Arthur Peter Mutharika displayed in response.
I was also turned off by MCP’s and UTM’s manipulation of ConCourt through family and friendship connections, to produce what I still consider a partisan judgement. And, of course,
I am pleased that DPP has found reconciliation with its parent party, my party, the UDF.
We Christians preach forgiveness and reconciliation. My Christian beliefs both compel and permit me to forgive and reconcile with the DPP.
For these reasons and others, I wholeheartedly endorse the presidential ticket bearing the names of President Arthur Peter Mutharika (DPP) for President and Atupele Muluzi (UDF) as his running mate.
Restraint under intense provocation is an especially important quality in a president especially in our circumstances where agents provocateurs always seek to exploit ethnic, racial, regional, political, and economic tensions.
In the past 11 months, President Arthur Peter Mutharika has shown that he has this quality in spades.
Real progress in national development can only happen under conditions of peace, harmony, and cooperation. That is the value that the Mutharika-Muluzi ticket brings to the table. Vote wisely. Vote for this ticket on June 23rd. Zikomo!!