By Frank Kamanga
Malawi’s Vice President Saulos Chilima’s United Transformation Movement (UTM) is heading in one and only one direction: down the cliff to its fatal crash.
To save it from early extinction, senior officials in the movement are now thinking of removing Chilima as its leader.
Because they have discovered what a bad man he is. The fallout is so real!
Since they launched their campaign against President Peter Mutharika in April 2018, the likes of Patricia Kaliati, Noel Masangwi, Louis Ngalande, Bon Kalindo and the others have promoted Chilima as a paragon of virtue.
Now there is silent confession that they made a fatal mistake and they want to correct the leadership mess they created for the grouping.
This came out at their strategy meeting held in Mponela in Dowa on Thursday 11 October 2018.
The meeting started at 11:30.am and was chaired by Callista Chapola and Andrew Kamlopa. It was attended by 26 people which included Noel Masangwi, Louis Ngalande, Ben Chidyaonga, Chris Kamlopa, Mrs Makuta, Richard Makondi and Newton Kambala.
Minutes of the meeting show these UTM leaders expressing increasing discomfort and frustration with Chilima’s leadership qualities.
His drunkenness was among those top on the agenda. The meeting was arranged in part to hear a report by a delegation that had been dispatched to talk to Chilima about his drunkenness and how it was bringing the group and himself to huge public discredit.
The delegation – which comprised Kambala, Makondi and Makuta – came back humiliated as Chilima told them off, branding them as childish for attempting to tell him how he should lead his life.
It is that Chilima is a stubborn dictator. For the UTM officials, the future looks ominous with him at the helm.
But what rubbed more pepper in the eye was Louis Ngalande’s revelation that Chilima is a thief. According to the minutes, Ngalande said Chilima is stealing money meant for UTM activities and investing it in personal businesses such as buying a hotel in Zambia.
“Actually the problem is not just drunkenness. Chilima is a thief. This man is receiving funds (for UTM) but this money is not reaching us for activities on the ground….Instead Chilima is buying a hotel in Zambia. This man is a thief,” Ngalande said.
So while these party officials are working their socks off in the difficult task of making UTM count, their leader is soliciting money in their name and that of UTM and investing it personal business. That is, while all of them are facing a doomed financial future after UTM crashes, Chilima is creating a hefty pension for himself.
This character of his has irked the officials such that they now want Chilima to be removed.
At the meeting, Ngalande proposed that Kaliati should take over because she is courageous and would appeal to the woman vote.
However this proposal was shot down on the grounds that Kaliati has little education and does not think when she speaks. So the search for a UTM leader continues as Chilima’s days seem numbered.
But then, it is interesting that the Kaliatis had not know what character Saulos is. Or may be they expected him to change?
For there is evidence that Chilima is an evil man – over and above his drunkenness and legendary womanizing skills. Wherever he has worked in the corporate world, he has been gossiping his way to the top.
Those who have worked with him at Lever Brothers, Southern Bottlers and Airtel Malawi report that he had the craft of betraying his seniors so that he gets their job.
He came into politics with this background and he has lived true to that character – hatching plot after plot against the man who picked him for the running-mate role.
Chilima is an evil man! If the Kaliati’s did not know, now they do and they no longer trust him. It is either they remove him or everyone sinks together with UTM. The choice cannot be difficult!
Disclaimer: Views expressed in this article are not necessarily the views of the Publisher or the Editor of Maravi Post