"It's shameful that the UDF party wants to take us back to the dark days,"

Mr Gwanda Chakuamba (2003)

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Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Game Over for Bakili Muluzi as he looks for options

MCP president John Tembo and former president Bakili Muluzi are scheduled to meet again this week to allegedly discuss a possible alliance though the two parties downplayed the issue on Tuesday, saying the meeting is on a different topic.
Sources at Muluzi’s BCA Hill residence in Blantyre and Tembo’s aides said the two leaders met yesterday at Muluzi’s residence but did not exhaust the agenda.
The sources said the two leaders are expected to continue their discussions today on the possible alliance.
Tembo could not be reached for comment.
UDF spokesperson Rob Jamieson confirmed the meeting took place but dismissed it was about forging an alliance on Tuesday.
“I can confirm that they did not meet on Monday but this [Tuesday] morning. I cannot state the exact details of their discussion but it centred on the implementation of the African Union agreement they signed,” said Jamieson.
He said it is in the interest of opposition parties to come together and ensure the implementation of the agreement which calls for free, fair and violence-free election.
“[President Bingu wa] Mutharika’s recent actions have shown that he is not interested in implementing the deal. What he was saying throughout his [whistle-stop] tour to Blantyre [last week] indicated that. So, the two leaders want to find a way forward,” said Jamieson.
Tembo and Muluzi’s meeting comes barely four days after the Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) barred Muluzi from contesting in the forthcoming elections because he already served two consecutive terms and that allowing him to stand would mean returning to the institution of Life Presidency
Muluzi, who is challenging MEC’s decision in court, told supporters during the launch of his campaign and manifesto in Mangochi on Saturday that he will still represent UDF and its alliance partners on May 19.
He told supporters that as opposition they are united and have devised strategies to unseat Mutharika. He did not elaborate.
MCP publicity secretary Ishmael Chafukira on Tuesday said he did not know about Muluzi and Tembo’s meetings and anything related to his president’s travel as he had not been informed about the developments.
Tembo, however, is on record to have stated that he was in an alliance with the UDF and had asked Muluzi for a running mate and he provided him with Brown Mpinganjira, who is fighting his party membership in courts after being expelled by the UDF.
Muluzi has remained silent on Mpinganjira’s move to MCP.

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