Political and legal experts in the country have warned that intra-party disputes in the main opposition party Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) will affect the party’s preparation for the 2025 tripartite elections.
There was drama at Parliament Building Lilongwe Wednesday morning when both George Chaponda and Kondwani Nankhumwa turned up for a Business Committee meeting, where Chaponda was chased.
Nankhumwa was recently fired from the DPP and the party appointed Chaponda as the new Leader of Opposition, but an injunction which was obtained in 2022 stands in the way of Chaponda.
In an interview with Nthanda Times, Political Analyst Vincent Matiya Chirwa says whatever is happening in the DPP is a clear indication that there is lack of unity.
“They are failing to contain the pressure from within their own house. What we have heard and what we have learnt from what happened at parliament where they have chosen someone while Nankhumwa is there signifies lack of unity in the party,” said Chirwa.
Chirwa added that failing to address the challenges at hand, other parties will use the squabbles in the party to de-campaigning the party ahead of the 2025 tripartite elections.
“If they fail to address the issues in these three months before the active conventions and campaigns, then the platform can slide, and constantly we might have DPP losing. People are fighting for positions in the party, if they continue fighting, they will not have time to resolve their misunderstandings and field a presidential candidate during the elections,” added Chirwa.
Chirwa further suggests that DPP leadership should start reconciliation processes to iron out all the inhouse misunderstandings to avoid occurrence of the same drama during the party’s convention in July this year.
Commenting on the matter, Legal expert Jai Banda has told Nthanda Times in an interview that Nankhumwa, who was chosen as Leader of Opposition in Parliament by the DPP, is not supposed to continue with the position since he was fired from the party.
“Nankhumwa was a Leader of Opposition by virtue of the fact that he was a member of the main opposition party in the country. Now that he is no longer in the DPP by operation of law and change in circumstances, he automatically ceases to be the Leader of Opposition in Parliament,” said Banda.
Meanwhile, George Chaponda has gone to court to seek the lifting of the injunction which 22 members of the DPP sought before High Court Judge, Justice Kenyatta Nyirenda in June 2022 stopping him from being a Leader of Opposition, and the inter-party hearing has been slated for 13 February 2024 at Judge Simeon Mdedza’s chamber.