Mutharika and Uladi Mussa during campaign trail in Salima

BLANTYRE-(MaraviPost)—Battle for presidency in the erstwhile ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) is increasingly becoming thrilling as more veteran politicians than ever are expressing interest to replace the aged Professor Peter Mutharika.

Unlike the previous presidential races, the forthcoming race has attracted faces who would otherwise recoil if another Mutharika came into the limelight considering the way the Mutharika family has been personalizing the party.

As the general public thought the battle would involve political gurus from the Lhomwe belt only, the party’s vice president responsible for central region, Uladi Mussa, has joined the race with much confidence and zeal to take over the driving seat.

Confirming the development with online media, Mussa said the decision has been made after receiving calls across the country’s political spectrum to take over the leadership of the party so as to revamp it for a possible return to government.

Mussa’s confirmation comes as some DPP supporters are drumming support for his candidacy through a placard which is in circulation on social media platforms.

According to the placard, Mussa is rated highl and is being touted as an inclusive leader who thrives in politics without throwing a regional or tribal card.

“I must tell you that this [placard] is the work of my supporters who are spread across the whole country. They have seen leadership potential they need for the party and I am ready to reciprocate their honour by humbling accepting to stand for the position at the next convention,” he said.

“I am very ready to stand for the position even if it means the convention taking place tomorrow. But let me emphasize and appeal to my supporters to respect the incumbent leadership of Professor Arthur Peter Mutharika because he remains our party president until the next convention,” Mussa added.

He continued: “I have the required experience and I will definitely contest.”

Other notable figures chasing the top seat include leader of opposition in parliament Kondwani Nankhumwa, who is also DPP vice president for Southern Region, Mutharika’s close friend and one of the DPP’s founders Dr. George Chaponda a and DPP’s vice president for eastern region Bright Msaka.

Meanwhile, there is tension in the party following emergence of two factions with one faction pushing for early elective convention to replace Mutharika while the other group is of the view that the incumbent leadership should continue until the right time for the convention.

Newly appointed spokesperson for DPP, Brown Mpinganjira, has told the media that the party will open the leadership contest and the race will only become official after October 31, 2020.

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