UTM Party secretary general Patricia Kaliati yesterday said 2020 was a successful year for the political party as it established structures at grass roots level and grew in membership.
She was speaking in an interview yesterday at the party’s Southern Region offices in Blantyre when the party welcomed into its fold Penjani Kalua, an artist commonly known as Fredokiss.
Kaliati, who is also Minister of Gender, Community Development and Social Welfare, said the previous year saw the party establishing structures at grass roots level.
She said: “The performance has been very good because we have managed to put up strong structures on the ground and we have also had many people joining. These people have been helpful because this has seen the party grow and as a leadership, we are proud of it.”
Welcoming Kalua into the party, Kaliati said they are hopeful that he will positively contribute to success of the party at all levels.
“He will pick the constituency from where he stopped when he was campaigning and he will take it beyond with the manifesto of UTM,” she said.
Kalua contested for the Blantyre City South parliamentary seat in the 2019 polls but lost to Democratic Progressive Party’s (DPP) legislator Noel Lipipa.
While saying it is too early to say whether he will contest for the seat again or not, the son to Rumphi East legislator Kamlepo Kalua said he will ably balance his music and political careers.
UTM Party was launched on July 21 2018 at Masintha Ground in Lilongwe by Vice-President Saulos Chilima after he fell out with the then governing DPP.
But while the party contested in the 2019 Tripartite Elections, it joined forces with the Malawi Congress Party in the June 23 2020 court-sanctioned presidential election to form the Tonse Alliance together with seven other parties. The alliance ousted the DPP from power.
Kaliati yesterday said being a nine-party alliance government means joining forces to implement promises made to Malawians during the campaign.
The media briefing was attended by, among others, UTM Party patron Noel Masangwi and other officials.