The lineup for the November 10 by-election race in Karonga Central Constituency is now complete following the presentation of nomination papers by five candidates on Wednesday at Chiwondo Teachers’ Development Centre (TDC).
Characterised by pomp, fan and glamour, the first to arrive was the independent shadow Member of Parliament Florence Shackie Nthakomwa who spiced up the event by coming on a cow cart with a sizeable but mesmerized horde of supporters, describing her coming on a cow cart as a symbol of closeness to the electorates.
Speaking to the media after successfully presenting her papers, Nthakomwa said people of the area should expect meaningful development once voted into power.
She said: “My coming here on a cow cart signifies the passion for the community who use cow carts as a means of transport for farm produce. Therefore, people should expect health facilities equipped with essential drugs, potable water, improved agricultural services, education and empowered women and youth”.
The second was a youthful 27 year old Mbakuwaku Movement for Development (MMD) Nellie Sichali who came on a convoy of about 10 motor cycles and said her focus will be to uplift the social economic welfare of the people.
At noon, UTM Party candidate Frank Mwenifumbo availed himself in the company of the national executive committee (NEC) and district committee members, appealed for peaceful campaign throughout the electoral calendar.
UTM party deputy treasurer general Olipa Muyaba told the party supporters who gathered at the school’s ground that the November 10 Parliamentary race is a ‘David and Goliath’ battle, adding, “David has to win this battle for him to foster development”.
Mwenifumbo who came with a fleet of cars was flanked by the regional governor for the North Moses Mulenga, national director of strategic planning Norman Nyirenda, deputy campaign director Makwenda Chunga and deputy director of research Catherine Mzumara.
The former Lupembe Ward Councillor who is the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) shadow candidate Ernest Mwalughali was the fourth candidate to present his nomination papers.
Speaking after presenting his papers, DPP deputy regional governor for the North Smart Mwakayira said it is an old broom that sweeps all corners of the room, saying Mwalughali’s strength lies in the fact that he once served as a Ward Councillor for the area.
The last candidate to complete the list of the contesting candidates was the MCP candidate who was accompanied by district chairperson Emmanuel Nkhoma, the deputy national organizing secretary Aram Beza and hundreds of party supporters.
Mwalwanda told the gathering after presenting his papers that once voted into office, his focus will be on four point plant of food, education, health facilities and portable water.
In an interview, Beza wooed people gathered outside the hall to vote for Mwalwanda, saying he has demonstrated that he is a development conscious candidate.
Karonga District elections coordinator Paul Kalilombe hailed the five candidates and their supporters for observing peace and has since appealed for issue based campaign for electorates to make an informed decision.