Blantyre, Malawi, Nov. 19 (Raphael Tenthani – Newstime Africa) – The ruling politburo of Malawi’s opposition United Democratic Front (UDF) has resolved to abolish the position of ‘National Chairman’ in the party. The party will instead be calling its leader ‘president’.
“The UDF National Executive Committee met and resolved to abolish the position of National Chairman because it was confusing some members,” Ken Ndanga, the UDF spokesman, told News Time Africa Monday.
He said this means the UDF’s newly-elected National Chairman Atupele Austin Muluzi, son of former president Bakili Muluzi, will now be referred to as president. Muluzi was elected at the party’s national convention on October 30.
Ndanga said the party has also incorporated five members to the National Executive, including Mosses Dossi and Ruth Takomana – both of whom challenged Muluzi for the party leadership.
Muluzi is scheduled to contest the 2014 presidential elections on the UDF ticket. His is likely to contest against President Joyce Banda of the Peoples Party and former ruling Democratic Progressive Party.
The UDF, under the elder Muluzi, won the 1994 elections ushering multiparty elections to the southern African country after 30 years of one-party rule under founding president Hasting Kamuzu Banda and his Malawi Congress Party (MCP). Muluzi also won the 1999 elections. His anointed successor the late Bingu wa Mutharika won the 2004 elections on the UDF ticket but dumped the party to found the DPP accusing UDF leaders of frowning upon his tough anti-corruption drive.
The UDF was therefore prematurely banished to opposition benches. The young Muluzi hopes to reclaim the presidency for the UDF during the 2014 elections.(rt)
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