By Alfred Mthandizi
Salima North Constituency, Jessie Kabwila, has appealed to the main opposition Malawi Congress Party’s (MCP) President, Lazarus Chakwera, to prove his extension of an olive branch to members holding parallel views.
Kabwila, while welcoming the Party’s National Executive Committee (NEC) olive branch that was extended to her by the MCP President Dr. Lazarus Chakwera last week, said there is need for Chakwera to demonstrate action with words.
“If indeed the Honourable Chakwera olive branch is genuine, let him remove the injunction obtained against us and hold the convention, the issue is simple, allow members to hold the convention and iron out our differences which emanated within the party.” said Kabwila.
Chakwera extended the olive branch as one way of rebuilding the Party ahead of 2019 general elections. Kabwila however, wondered why they have not received formal communications on the matter. “We are just hearing this through the media. I don’t think this is the way we run the party, especially on issues to do strengthening the party.” said Kabwila.
Kabwila said that she will take the olive branch seriously when the leadership removes a court injunction of the planned July 7th convention that aims to iron out party wrangles that have rocked the Party for the past two years. Dr. Kabwila emphasized the need for the Party’s NEC to come out clearly on the resolutions it made during last Saturday’s emergency meeting. She said the olive branch has been extended to everyone and has been deemed to be done in good faith by the Party leadership.
On the incoming business mogul cum-politician Sidik Mia into to the party, Kabwila advised him to follow the proper procedure. Mia is former Transport Minister Sidik. Kabwila strongly accused Mia of manipulating the Party’s leadership with money to buy positions and going against the MCP’s protocol in welcoming new members.
Kabwila, therefore still insists on holding the July 7 convention. She said this is the best strategy to unlock the Party’s wrangles. She disputed claims that the convention is slated to remove Party President Lazarus Chakwera, but rather the disgruntled former regional and district chairpersons have valid grounds on the matter, which must be respected.
“The olive branch must be in good faith and disbursed through formal communication channels to all, not through the social media. The Party leadership must come clear on the terms and conditions on those that were unconstitutionality removed from their positions. The NEC must also remove the court injunction it obtained against the holding of emergency convention slated for July 7. This will signify the reconciliation process,” she said.
Kabwila said the Party needs the convention to take place as soon as possible since it is the Party’s supreme forum to iron out our difference before it’s too late. The emergency convention seeks to mend fences.
She reiterated her stand on Sidik Mia, whom she accused of trying to buy his position in the Party, but speaking during the NEC meeting, Chakwera said the time for infighting is over. Chakwera said 2019 is just too close, hence no need for infighting.