Dust Resists To Settle In Dpp Camp
The main opposition Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) is still facing an uphill task to settle the long-existing leadership fight that has created a remarkable division within the party.
There has been a lot of commotion since the former ruling party was forced out from office two years ago because
its members could not agree on any common objectives.
The party, which is led by Peter Mutharika, who is also an immediate former president of Malawi, is battling to regain its glory after the loss of the 2020 presidential polls.
The party’s path to building a strong base in anticipation of a potential re-election in the 2025 elections, however, appears cloudy as a result of its inability to fix its wings, most notably on standing a common feat on who will be the party’s next president after Peter Mutharika.
Many Malawians, including political experts, have been tipping the DPP to hasten the move of holding a national
convention where the successor of Mutharika will be known in good time, a development many believe will put to
rest the leadership succession battle.
The possible candidates who are known to have applied for the position of president include, Kondwani
Nankhumwa, who is currently the vice president for the Southern region, Dalitso Kabambe, the former Governor of the Reserve Bank of Malawi, Bright Msaka, and George Chaponda.
The long-awaited DPP Convention is yet to be announced, but the cracks inside the party continue to grow.
The issue of appointing the leader of opposition in parliament has become another potential divider of members
inside the party.
In October 2020, the party moved in to remove Kondwani Nankhumwa as Leader of Opposition in Parliament. The
party planned to replace him with Francis Kansaila, a former Member of Parliament for Nsanje Central Constituency.
Contrary to the party’s mission, the move to remove Kondwani Nankhumwa proved futile following the resistance
of Nankhumwa, who challenged the decision through court proceedings till he maintained his position.
Since then, the attempt of DPP to displace Nankhumwa as opposition party leader has been operating time
The party, last year, launched another move to dismiss Secretary General, Greselder Jeffrey, Vice President for
southern region, Kondwani Nankhumwa, Treasurer General Jappie Mhango, and Mulanje West legislature, Yusuf Nthenda.
The attempt to fire the four came into action in response to their alleged effort to influence incumbent leader Peter Mutharika to stop his move to earmark Francis Kansaila as a potential replacement of Kondwani Nankhumwa.
Later on, the move to fire them was reversed by the party’s administrative secretary, Francis Mphepo.
In the latest development, the DPP made a fresh move last month to appoint George Chaponda as Leader of Opposition in Parliament to replace Kondwani Nankhumwa.
Barely a day later, 22 DPP legislators who rallied behind Nankhumwa obtained a court order to stop Mulanje South West Legislature, George Chaponda, from holding the embattled position.
This shows that, the main opposition party is still in hard battle to settle the existing disputes where the party looks to have been divided into two hemispheres.
Political pundit Ernest Thindwa was quoted earlier as having said that, the events in the party will only lead to the
DPP’s decline in Malawi’s politics.
Thindwa says that the issue of Leader of Opposition is an extension of contest for the party’s leadership. Nankhumwa is interested in competing for the presidency, but the current leadership is not interested in him. Essentially, the party is getting weaker by the day.
Some quarters of society are suggesting that, the unsettled dust in the main opposition party is a big blow to national
development as the party, in that state, cannot strongly hold the ruling government into strong checks and balances.
Will the dominant opposition party survive until the tripartite elections in 2025? The fight is too great for the opposing party. For the party to survive power sickness more work must be done and gain back the trust of Malawians.