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Malawi: Reactions to former president political comeback

Categories: Sub-Saharan Africa, Malawi, Governance, Photography, Politics

Recently, the United Democratic Front (UDF) of Malawi's former president Bakili Muluzi [1] had a convention and elected him as their presidential candidate [2] in next year's election. His only challenger was Malawi's vice president Dr Cassim Chilumpha [3] who is answering treason charges [4]. Lilongwe-based blogger Austin Madinga says he Muluzi's comeback is for wrong reasons. Madinga introduces his post [5] by saying that he heard Muluzi in a BBC in an interview:

When asked why he would like to return as Malawi's president he said because Bingu wa Mutharika (Muluzi's successor) had dumped the party after he was elected president and as such he needed to return the UDF to power! This type of reasoning to me is not only gravely flawed but also defied all logic. Mr Muluzi needs to be reminded that people do not ascend to power to simply punish others or for the sake of being a ruling party. They are placed in positions of authority to serve the people and going by Muluzi's past record, that is not likely to feature high on his agenda.


A prominent Malawian political science commentator and University of Malawi lecturer Boniface Dulani [6] started blogging a few weeks with the sole purpose of sharing his views on politics in Malawi. His recent post is titled On the UDF Convention and Why Muluzi will not get my vote. [7] He critically looks at Muluzi's candidature and the UDF convention [8] which he describes as a joke since its delegates were themselves not democratically chosen:

Even if I was to be persuaded to believe that Muluzi did a wonderful job in his first ten years in office (and it would not be a mean achievement to convince me), I just cannot accept that the UDF does not have any other individuals from within their ranks that are capable of leading the party into the next elections. The only way we know Muluzi has the potential to be President is because he was given the chance to serve in the first place. This only goes to show that what the country, and the UDF, lack is not people with leadership potential, but opportunities to serve. If Muluzi is so important to the UDF, he can serve an important advisory role to a different UDF nominee instead of clinging on to the candidacy himself.

Now to something different about Malawi. The Botswana-based blogger Bennet Kankuzi launched a bog titled I Love Malawi [9] with the primary purpose of sharing photos about Malawi fondly called the Warm Heart of Africa. So if one someone wants to follow the beauty of Malawi, here is the blog to give you some relief from the politics and economy. Below is one of the pictures showing the tea plantations of Southern Malawi: