Former Malawi President Bakili Muluzi has caught the ire of Malawians for advising opposition Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) to sort its internal wrangles with his United Democratic Front (UDF) currently on life-support.
Muluzi is the chairperson of the UDF, the party he founded to oust Kamuzu Banda and his Malawi Congress Party.
Muluzi’s wish to cling on to power by seeking the unsuccessful third term and later attempting to control Bingu wa Mutharika is what led to the founding of the DPP by the latter after securing victory in the 2004 presidential race with a minority government.
Muluzi, whose attempt to stand again in 2009 was barred by the Constitutional Court, is accused of hand-picking his son, Atupele Muluzi to lead UDF in 2014 and 2019 presidential elections. Atupele failed miserably in both attempts.
The UDF has been labelled by several social commentators as a dying party, following into the footsteps of the once gigantic party of the Northern bloc, Alliance for Democracy (AFORD) as Atupele lost his parliamentary seat in his home village.
But yesterday, Muluzi advised DPP to put its house in order if the party is to oust the current regime of Lazarus Chakwera whose MCP is leading a bloc of political parties under the Tonse Alliance umbrella.
Muluzi said the DPP is strong in all areas and districts but should end its leadership wrangles.
Malawians have since described Muluzi’s remarks as evidence that Muluzi has given up on the UDF.
“UDF is a sad story. A big has been. If at all you needed evidence that this party is dead: today, its founding president made an animated plea for a splinter party to get its act together. Ordinarily, UDF should have been capitalizing on DPP’s blunders to canibalise it and strengthen itself. But its shadowy leader showed today that he has all but given up on the yellow party. He wants a strong DPP! Ha!,” said lawyer Khumbo Soko.
While journalist Jack McBrams tweeted: “In what capacity is Bakili Muluzi commenting on the DPP fiasco? And if he is so wise, why is he not resolving the problems in his own UDF?”