The main opposition party, the Malawi Congress Party (MCP) will from Tuesday August 21 2018 conduct primary elections for Parliamentary and Local Government elections in readiness for the May, 2019 tripartite elections.
MCP’s Director of Elections, Elias Chakwera, confirmed the development and added that primary elections for the party are expected to start in Dowa East, Dedza North and Lilongwe South East Constituencies.
He said they will conduct the elections in phases for a start to draw lessons from there and improve.
Concurring with Chakwera, MCP publicity secretary Rev. Maurice Munthali said the umbrella decision was that the Party conducts primaries where the voter registration exercise is over.
“In this case, we will begin conducting our primary elections in the Central Region. The only condition, however, is that these elections will be conducted only in constituencies where all is set and the playing field is level with structures that have been authenticated by the Party’s Director of Elections.
The Party does not want to deny anyone their right to contest in any position nor will the leadership favour anybody at the disadvantage of other aspirants,” said Munthali.
Meanwhile, Abida Mia, wife to MCP Vice president Sidik Mia, is contemplating of joining front-line politics. According to Abida, she has been approached by chiefs and other community leaders that she should contest as member of Parliament (MP) for Chikwawa-Nkombezi Constituency.
Initially, the MCP vice president who was once MP for the area was to contest in the constituency in the forthcoming elections before deciding to pave way for his wife.
“Chiefs and some community leaders have approached me but you know it’s a big decision to make. I have to think about it. They say they simply would like a candidate or an MP that has the people’s problems at heart and the fact that ‘Honourable’ Mia will be Vice president and give up his seat they are afraid that their needs may not be met,” she said.
Abida Mia added that if she decides on contesting for the constituency, she will have to take part in primary elections to make sure all candidates are given a chance and that people select a candidate of their choice.
Currently, the constituency is under Lloyd Malora of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP).
The DPP and other parties that already conducted their elective national conventions such as United Democratic Front (UDF) and Alliance for Democracy (Aford) are yet to indicate when they will conduct their primaries. The People’s Party (PP) is yet to hold its convention.