Mzuzu City Council Deputy Mayor Alexander Mwakikunga, councillor for Chibavi Ward Gabriel Mwaungulu and several others have dumped Malawi Congress Party (MCP) for newly-formed United Transformation Movement (UTM).
The defectors cited bad leadership in MCP as the reason for their quitting.
But MCP spokesperson the Reverend Maurice Munthali said the party wishes the defectors well in their new endeavours.
Mwakikunga and Mwaungulu were among councillors that were voted on an MCP ticket in the May 20 2014 Tripartite Elections.
Yesterday, they were welcomed to UTM by regional secretary Peter Mkandawire at a meeting held at St Andrew’s CCAP Hall in Mzuzu.
The councillors were accompanied by various district and regional committee members of MCP in the North as well as aspiring councillors.
Speaking during the meeting, Mwakikunga cited growing intolerance in MCP as major reason for his defection. He said people that have opposing views are being harassed or sidelined in the party and there was no way he could continue serving the party.
He said: “Today, there is democracy and democracy entails that you have to have divergent views. But when you have divergent views currently, it is a crime in MCP.”
He said he has been following Vice-President Saulos Chilima for sometime and is convinced that he is the right leader to associate with and support.
Munthali said MCP values any member in the party regardless of when they joined and which role they play. He said nobody is and has ever been a custodian or sole proprietor of the Malawi Congress Party.
He wished the defectors well saying MCP will always respect one’s freedom of choice.
But Munthali warned the defectors to desist from greed or join UTM out of frustration.