Blantyre; August 14, 2017: United Democratic Front (UDF) President, Atupele Muluzi has called upon politicians in Africa to learn to accept electoral defeat for development to forge ahead.
Muluzi made the call Sunday during a political rally he held at Nyambabwe Primary School ground in Ndirande, Blantyre.
He said countries in Africa are failing to make strides in development because of ‘greedy’ opposition leaders who fail to accept electoral defeat.
“We need to understand that elections come and go. In an election there are winners and losers. But what is extremely important is to make sure that once the elections are over the country must remain united,” the UDF leader said.
Muluzi pointed out that, “The problem in Africa is that after an election, the losers don’t want to accept defeat. Time has come for Africa to practice issue based and civilized politics and let us change our mindset.”
On working alliance with the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), the UDF leader said after 2014 elections, President Peter Mutharika asked him to help in running the affairs of the country, an olive branch in which he accepted.
“I accepted the olive branch so that Malawi should develop. The problem with defeated African leaders is that they do not want the winner to rule in peace and quiet, this is undemocratic,” Muluzi said, who is also Minister of Health in the DPP led government.
On whether UDF will form an electoral alliance with the ruling DPP during the forthcoming 2019 Presidential Elections, Muluzi said the Party will make a decision at its convention.
“This is a process. Soon we will hold a convention to elect new president of the party. And this is the rightful platform where issues of political alliance can be ably handled. Politics is dynamic, since 1994 we have seen a number of electoral alliances but it only depends on circumstances and political ideologies,” he narrated.
Muluzi trashed media reports suggesting that UDF has lost popularity among Malawians at the grassroots.
“Some people are preaching that UDF is dead, if the party is indeed dead where are all these supporters coming from?” the UDF President asked thousands of supporters who gathered at the rally.
UDF’s Blantyre District Governor, James Makuta concurred with Muluzi that the party is still strong at the grassroots.
“UDF is not dead as some [media] people are putting it; the crowd that has gathered here is a clear manifestation that the party is still a force to reckon with,” he said.
During the rally, Muluzi welcomed into the party two former ruling People’s Party (PP) members Clement Stambuli and Yusuf Mwawa.