NRP's Ken Zikhale Ng'oma (left) and Gwanda Chakuamba in good old days addressing a UDF political rally. They now have dumped Muluzi and the opposition UDF opting to work with government. Pic By Malawi Digest.
By Lucy Liponda
The New Republican Party (NRP) of Gwanda Chakuamba and its entire party executive has agreed to work and support the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) of Dr Bingu wa Mutharika, Malawi Digest can confirm.
In a brief interview with Malawi Digest a short while ago, NRP’s vice president and acting secretary general Ken Zikhale Ng’oma said they have resolved to work with the ruling party and the incumbent Malawi president.
“We have held discussions for a long time over this matter and decided that Dr Bingu wa Mutharika is the only person who can best handle this country,” he said.
He further disclosed that he was assigned by the party to make the announcement.
“I have been assigned as vice president and secretary general of the party to make this announcement on behalf of the entire party including my president Right Honourable Gwanda Chakuamba,” he said.
Although Ng’oma did not indicate why Gwanda Chakuamba did not make the announcement himself, the Shire Valley political giant is a devout Seventh Day Adventist who keeps his Sabbath holy by staying away from politics, hence the announcement by Ng’oma this Saturday.
Unofficial reports reaching Malawi Digest indicate that Chakuamba and Ng'oma and the entire NRP deal will be unveiled at the ruling DPP campaign launch at Kamuzu Stadium in Malawi's commercial capital, Blantyre tomorrow.
The announcement by the NRP to support government and the ruling party marks the complete downfall of the opposition UDF party’s May 19th election campaign.
The announcement by NRP means the end of the political alliance partnership between the UDF and NRP.
NRP was the only significant political party in the UDF electoral alliance for the May polls. The other parties remaining with the UDF in partnership are the lone man’s parties of MDP of Kamlepo Kalua, MDU of Amunandife Mkumba and Uladi Mussa.
Mussa’s entire party executive last month defected to the ruling DPP leaving him alone.
For over three years, Gwanda Chakuamba was the only significant voice behind former president Bakili Muluzi’s morale booster voice.
He also helped a lot in the re-building of the opposition UDF party when the party was in tatters after the departure of incumbent president Dr Bingu wa Mutharika and thousands upon thousands of members.
Things have not been well for Muluzi in the last few months after Chakuamba clearly showed signs that he was not confident with the leadership of Bakili Muluzi.
Following Muluzi’s return from a month long stay in the United Kingdom in mid-December, Chakuamba has refused to attend any of Muluzi’s public rallies except once.
Since December, Gwanda Chakuamba has appeared with Bakili Muluzi in public once on 4th February when the UDF leader presented his nomination papers to the independent Malawi Electoral Commission.
Meanwhile, the Malawi Electoral Commission rejected Bakili Muluzi’s nomination papers on Friday indicating a dead end to the former president’s bid for a third term come back campaign – Malawi Digest.