Running mates debate should provide solutions to the North

Expectations are high among voters in the Northern Region that the presidential running mate debate, which is being planned by media giant Zodiak to be held at Grand Palace Hotel in Mzuzu on Tuesday, will provide tangible solutions to inject new life into the economy of the Northern Region which politicians have described as the “dead North” due to lack of significant economic development initiatives.

Peter Mumba, the Governance Chairperson of Mzuzu Civil Society (MCISON) an umbrella body of civil society organizations in the North said this in an interview in Mzuzu on Friday. 

“The Northern Region has been described by politicians as the dead North. We want to know from these running mates what are some of the measures that they should take to change this perception of the North as the dead North.

“We want to hear what the challenges that we are facing are and what strategies they have to solve these problems,” Mumba said.

At the Mzuzu debate, Frank Mwenifumbo of United Democratic Front (UDF) Michael Usi of United Transformation Movement (UTM) and   Mohammed Sidik Mia of Malawi Congress Party (MCP) will face each other.

Mumba, however, punched holes into the MCP manifesto which promises to revamp and upgrade all airports to international standards and aerodromes to connect all strategic tourist destinations including Likoma, Mzuzu, Chelinda Camp in Nyika Plateau, Karonga and Chitipa.

“The small airport in Mzuzu is not even in use and now we are aiming for a big airport.  When are these people going to do this? First let them develop the road network before they focus on airports for tourism,” he said.

Speaking to the media earlier this week, Organizing Committee Chairperson for the Debate Raymond Likambale said that people in the Region should expect an exciting debate which is planned to start at exactly 6PM at the Hotel on Tuesday.