LILONGWE-(MaraviPost)-There was drama at Sanjika palace on Monday this week ,January 14 when a reportedly visibly angry President Peter Mutharika shouted at his party top brass, accusing them of lying to him that Vice President Saulos Chilima was politically weak therefore sidelining him would not trigger any political trouble.
An impeccable source inside the corridors of the palace said Mutharika shouted at his political advisor Francis Mphepo, Chief of Staff Peter Mukhito and Director of Communications Dr. Bright Mollande for being responsible for the current fight back which Chilima has waged against the DPP ever since he formed UTM.
The source said Mutharika summoned the three because the whole plot to get rid of Chilima in the second term was created by Mollande.
“Soon after Mollande became Director of Information, he convinced the President to get rid of Chilima before it was too late. He told the President to get the reforms off Chilima as they were making him look as if he was in charge of the civil service,” said the source.
“You may recall that at a certain point in 2016, the DPP nearly roped in Atupele as second Vice President. This was meant to neutralise Chilima politically. If it were not for Public Affairs Committee this would have happened. From that time, the DPP inner circle started calling Chilima a consultant who was no longer wanted in DPP.”
The source said these plans were backed bybMphepo and Mkhito who frequently reminded the President that he needed someone weaker for the position of VP and not someone capable and competent in the eyes of the public like Chilima was proving. This is why the DPP never gave any political position to Chilima in the party.
“At this stage the trio assured the President that they will spearhead the plot to sideline the Vice President until he becomes a bootlicker to the DPP”.
However, the source said Mutharika has been worried of UTM of late and he watches every UTM rally, saying sometimes they fear for his health when they see Chilima too confident of taking over the government.
The source added that after the meeting, Mphepo reminded the President that when it comes to UTM formation all including the President must take the blame.
“When Callista first came out that Chilima must stand at the convention, some officials spoke to the President to talk to her and Chilima but the President said ‘they can go to hell. I am from Chicago I will deal with them’ otherwise there was an opportunity to kill the tension that time,” said the source.
For now, added the source, Mutharika looks lost and tensed up, saying he was fine with Chakwera (leader of Oppositio) but the coming of UTM has made the President worried about the outcome of the elections.
“One thing, he keeps telling people to watch out for Chilima saying he is technologically competent,” said the source.
Mutharika won the elections in 2014 with Chilima as runningmate. As he seeks second term, he will face his Vice President on the ballot.