Joyce Banda: named SIA-Africa person of the month

Looking at the way PP led government and PP as a party is handling the affairs of the party and the nation, Malawi should be vigilant enough otherwise the dark smoke which I perceive coming from the PP house will eventually gut down Malawi in the near future worse than the damage it has already caused.

I am not trying to poke my nose into PP’s affairs but as a patriotic Malawian, it is my duty to alert my fellow citizens whenever I sense danger because as we march towards election, any political party has a potential of running government come May 20 and that must be realised fairly. What has been taking place in PP leaves a lot to be worried.

It is to everyone’s knowledge that, there has been a fight of power between the incumbent members of parliament in PP and new aspirants. The old guards, using their connection to the top leadership in the party have fought so hard to frustrate the advances of new comers. Even the incumbents have been fighting themselves, a good example being that of Mwalwanda and Mwenefumbo. We know that other parties are also carrying out their primaries and there are also tensions but the PP’s ones surpass all. It is unfortunate and regrettable that PP’s in-fight is fuelled by the party’s top leadership which has embarked on the journey to back the old guards while repelling the new comers. The recent development in which People’s Party declared Ralph Jooma and Ibrahim Matola the winners of the primary elections despite Matola being defeated by Benedicto Chambo is worrisome.

This development frustrates electorates which may cost PP during the forthcoming elections. If few people who were involved in the primary elections did not favour Matola and Jooma, what do you think will change their minds during the general elections? PP may lose votes if Chambo and others decide to contest as independent candidates.

Surprisingly, the same party which is lamenting about lack of funds for re-runs ruled for re-run in some constituencies such as Zomba Central where Joseph Chikwemba the party’s deputy administrative secretary lost and in Mangochi East where Ibrahim Daudi lost also. Wait a minute; will I be wrong if I say that PP is shielding true cash-gate beneficiaries from being exposed to new comers? This shows that PP is full of people who are not ready to accept defeat and that should worry Malawians as we head towards elections. We need peace before, during and after elections. These people may bring chaos in Malawi if they happen to lose election including the incumbent president herself because I am convinced that all these unfortunate developments have her blessings. If they cannot put their house in order, will they care about fighting other parties through rigging elections or rejecting the election results even if they lose fairly? I am just asking, because PP has not democratic at all.

Rumours are all over in town that the cash-gate scandal was as a result of PP’s effort to raise funds for their election campaign only that things didn’t go as planned, hence, the beans spilled. Malawi economy has shrunk because of the ruling party which is selfish and does not care about national interest. It was shocking to hear the whole president defending the cash-gate scandal saying, the beneficiaries are not guilty knowing quit well that her PP benefitted from the same.  Amidst all these, people are dying in public hospitals and prisons because the ruling party is busy raising campaign funds from the public purse. If you care less about people, who will vote for you?

It is also rumoured that, the court cases facing some opposition party leaders are a witch-hunt aiming at blocking them from contesting in this year’s election. It is likely that these cases will be hot as we draw closer to the election so as to frustrate their bid. Peter Mutharika has been hunted including the issue of his citizenship which was aimed at blocking him from contesting. Peter’s greatest headache now is the court charges facing him.

The other danger warning sign is the rumours of election rigging which others believe that voter registration has done a good part already. We heard that in some opposition’s strongholds, voter registration was slow with faulty equipment and inexperienced staff to frustrate potential voters. When they reached in Zomba, registration went smooth with a larger number of people registered, including transferring state house staff from Lilongwe to amayi’s constituency to boost support. Now we hear about election rigging rehearsal. Though this may not be true, we still need to be vigilant enough other than watching the arrow into our eyes.

Madam Banda claimed to have sold the presidential jet and that she was no longer interested in using it, but now it is alleged that the jet was not sold, or there is a secret deal between the buyer and the president. The president is still using this jet and the where-about of the money realised from the jet sale is a mystery. We were told that the money will be used to buy maize but there is no maize in ADMARCs, where is the money? Is it wrong to suspect that the money from the jet sale is used for campaign by PP? Yes, there is no maize in ADMARCs but in PP political rallies, which alone speaks volumes about the dark smoke.

These five irregularities should not be ignored but serve as warning signs so that we can be alert of any suspicious behaviour which may lead to unfair or violent elections.

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