This weekend we are here at Game Haven in the republic of Thyolo to celebrate many things and events. We, members, fanatics and followers of the United Democratic Front (UDF) and the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) are very contented and excited that for once our parties have a formal working relationship. Everyone knows, UDF and DPP are one, prodigal father and son.
And we were consulted from branch, ward, constituency, district, regional and national levels. Our views are clear. We want the presidency of this country to remain in the Southern Region. The alliance will produce our expectations of gaining the notorious 50%+1 votes being forced on us. This is what the UDF Secretariat meant when it said in its release that as a party we will only act in the interest of Malawians.
Also, we members of the UDF and DPP did not want to be dancing to the tune of political novices, namely the UTM Party, whose leadership thinks that winning a court case is equivalent to winning votes. Votes, dear novices, are in the villages, among the poor, the uneducated and the illiterate.
They are loyal and don’t care about what courts say or do. Whether the presidency is delayed or not, it remains ours in Mangochi, Machinga, Zomba, Thyolo, Phalombe and, to a negligible extent, Mulanje. Votes are acquired through campaigns in the communities. Votes are not garnered through demonstrations and threats. After all, most of those who take to the streets don’t even bother to vote as the 2019 Tippex election, which we squarely and fairly won, demonstrated.
The only party our alliance fears is the Malawi Congress Party (MCP) because its supporters, members and fanatics are ardent and unflinching. Imagine if the UDF or DPP were out of power for 20 years would they have members, or supporters or fanatics? Our prayer is that the MCP and the UTM should continue their games of greed about who leads their rumoured union until fresh Election Day.
We are also here to celebrate the return of Mufti Jean-PhilippeLePoisson, SC (RTD) and Professor Dr Joyce Befu who had gone on leave to America, Germany, the Netherlands, Japan and China. They returned yesterday. They have chosen to go into voluntary quarantine from tonight just in case they have the notorious and decimating corona virus disease. That’s what all responsible citizens should be doing.
Finally, we are here to celebrate the promotion of the former vice-president Everton Chimulirenji from being a mere messenger of the President responsible for Disaster Management Affairs to a full Cabinet minister for the same.
Those who follow us, like us, hate us, or despise us will recall that over time we have made several propositions here, some of which, such as the turning of the Malawi Institute of Management into a full university, have been adopted and implemented.
One of the suggestions we made was the upgrading of the Department of Disaster Management Affairs to a ministry so that it should have its own budget line. Until this month, money meant for disaster interventions fell or was handled by the Office of the President and Cabinet (OPC). During a disaster, the department had to request the army, police and other departments for assistance. From now on, all affairs to do with disasters will be handled by the Minister of Disaster Management Affairs and his staff.
We hope to have rescue and air ambulance helicopters, inflatable speed boats and trained personnel. All the firefighting departments in the cities and municipalities should fall under the ministry of disaster management affairs.
So, congratulations Everton Chimulirenji, VP (RTD) on your appointment as the first minister for managing disasters. What you do in that ministry will be a baseline against which your successors will be judged. We members of the UDF-DPP alliance and Malawians of goodwill will work with you to ensure that Malawians of all political, religious and tribal persuasions are served well, quantitatively and qualitatively.