Seven political parties on Tuesday signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to field one presidential candidate under the banner of Tisintha Alliance in the May 20 2014 Tripartite Elections.
The seven parties are New Labour Party (NLP), Malawi Forum for Unity and Development (Mafunde), New Republican Party (NRP), Republican Party (RP), Congress for National Unity (Conu), Malawi Democratic Party (MDP) and National Unity Party (NUP).
NLP president Friday Jumbe, Mafunde president George Nnensa, NRP secretary general Anuwale Phalira, RP vice-president Reuben Mdoka, Conu president Sylvester Chabuka, MDP president Frank Daniel Lisaupata and NUP secretary general Hawkins Munyenyembe signed the MoU in Blantyre on behalf of their respective parties.
Initially, the parties were supposed to be eight, but the Alliance for Democracy (Aford) has been recused to sort out its internal problems.
However, a political commentator has doubted the impact of Tisintha Alliance.
But Nnensa expressed hope that the alliance will beat the just over 30 percent votes the winning president got in the 2004 elections.
He said: “This alliance will change the trend where [presidential] winning candidate got just over 35 percent of the votes in 2004 which showed that a majority of people did not like him.”
Nnensa dismissed suggestions that the alliance is a grouping of small parties, saying there is nothing like small or big parties in politics.
The alliance is a continuation of opposition parties which came together in 2011 when they were 14 but others, including the now governing People’s Party (PP) of President Joyce Banda, pulled out.
The parties will meet this Thursday to elect the presidential candidate and the running mate.
Political commentator Dr Henry Chingaipe said much as it is good for the parties to come together, he doubts they will achieve what they want.
He suggested that in future, they should join together and form a single political party rather than forming an alliance.