Connect with us

East Africa News

Malawi’s Mutharika faces tough election against deputy, former pastor3 minutes read

A major issue at these elections will be corruption, following a series of high-profile scandals in the past decade.

News Central

Published

on

Malawi's Mutharika faces tough election against deputy, former pastor
Malawi's President, Peter Mutharika addresses his supporters as he launches his Democratic Progressive Party's (DPP) manifesto and election campaign on April 7, 2019, at Kamuzu Institute for Sports in Malawi's capital, Lilongwe ahead of next month's elections where he will seek a second and final term in office. - Mutharika, who has been in power since 2014, will face tough opposition, including those from his own deputy, Saulos Chilima, at the May 21 election. (Photo by AMOS GUMULIRA / AFP)

Malawi’s President, Peter Mutharika is in for a stern test at next week’s elections, challenged by a field of candidates including his deputy – a one-time ally turned rival – and a former pastor who accuses him of corruption.

Former law professor, Mutharika, 78, is trying to secure a second five-year presidential term on Tuesday, when Malawians will also vote for a new parliament and local government councillors.

The country is heavily dependent on foreign aid and has suffered frequent severe droughts in the last decade that have affected hundreds of thousands of people. Mutharika is credited with improving infrastructure and lowering inflation.

But he was dealt a blow last year when Deputy President, Saulos Chilima quit the governing Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) to form a new party, the United Transformation Movement (UTM).

Chilima, a 46-year-old former telecoms executive, has gambled his political future on winning the presidency said Boniface Dulani from the University of Malawi.

“If Chilima loses, that might signal the end of his political career; win, and he gets a platform to see if the successes he had in the private sector can be replicated in government,” Dulani told Reuters.

A major issue at these elections will be corruption, following a series of high-profile scandals in the past decade.

Chilima and Lazarus Chakwera, a former pastor who is also running for
president and who leads the Malawi Congress Party (MCP), say Mutharika
has nurtured graft.

Mutharika denies that. He says local media reports that he benefited from a
$4 million contract to supply food to the police force are a ploy to smear him before the elections.

“People don’t eat politics. But they need development, which is what I have delivered and will continue to do,” Mutharika said at the opening of a new road on Wednesday.

But Chilima says it’s time for a change.

Chakwera, 64, says he would rid government of cronyism if elected. “Our
first objective is to rid the public service of corruption,” he said at
a recent rally.

Young Voters –

Mutharika is likely to draw support from rural areas, where his government’s agricultural subsidies and electrification programmes tend
to win votes, analysts say.

Those subsidies have helped boost harvests of maize, the country’s staple grain. Some economists also say the president has ushered in a period of relative economic stability, with lower interest rates and higher foreign currency reserves in the country of around 19 million people.

But a problem for Mutharika could come from younger voters, who make up more than half of Malawi’s 6.8 million registered voters at these elections.

Chilima has tried to tap into the youth vote with a social media campaign featuring hip-hop videos. His UTM party has promised to create 1 million jobs for young people if it wins.

MCP, the largest opposition party in the current parliament, has increased its support in Malawi’s most populous southern province, which could boost Chakwera’s chances.

The official opposition, which governed Malawi from independence until
1994, has also formed an electoral alliance with former president, Joyce
Banda’s People’s Party.

Another contender in the presidential vote will be Atupele Muluzi, health minister in Mutharika’s cabinet who leads the United Democratic Front party.

Copyright News Central

All rights reserved. This post and other digital content on this website may not be reproduced, published, broadcasted, rewritten or redistributed in whole or in part without prior express written permission from News Central.

Tell your story the right way

Have you witnessed a news worthy event? Want to become our citizen journalist and tell your own stories?

Send your stories to us or contact us via:
Email: Click to email us
Social media: Twitter and Facebook @NewsCentralTV
WhatsApp: Text or call +234 901 190 0000 .

New stories delivered to your phone

Click here to have news stories delivered to your phone or mail. You can also share your stories with us. Join our mailing list here.

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Business News

Heavy rains threaten Uganda’s coffee crop quality

Published

on

Uganda’s coffee crop quality could see a decline in the coming months as heavy rains across the country have reduced the amount of sunshine necessary for bean drying.

Uganda is Africa’s largest exporter of coffee followed by Ethiopia and grows mostly robusta variety.

The country has been pounded by unusually heavy rains that started in August resulting in deaths, displacement and extensive damage to roads and other infrastructure.

Western Uganda, including the foothills of the Rwenzori mountains , some of the biggest coffee growing areas, has received some of the most intense rains.

Uganda Coffee Development Authority (UCDA), the state-run regulator, forecasts Uganda’s bean exports will climb 16 percent to 5.1 million 60-kg (132-pound) bags in the current crop year ending September.

The country’s coffee output has surged in recent years, the fruition of a government programme that has been distributing free seedlings to farmers to expand acreage and replace aging trees.

Authorities say their target is to help boost annual production to 20 million bags by 2025.

The beans have traditionally been Uganda’s biggest commodity export but were recently overtaken by gold which now annually earns the country over $1 billion.

Copyright News Central

All rights reserved. This post and other digital content on this website may not be reproduced, published, broadcasted, rewritten or redistributed in whole or in part without prior express written permission from News Central.

Tell your story the right way

Have you witnessed a news worthy event? Want to become our citizen journalist and tell your own stories?

Send your stories to us or contact us via:
Email: Click to email us
Social media: Twitter and Facebook @NewsCentralTV
WhatsApp: Text or call +234 901 190 0000 .

New stories delivered to your phone

Click here to have news stories delivered to your phone or mail. You can also share your stories with us. Join our mailing list here.

Continue Reading

Business News

Tanzania, France sign water supply loan agreement

Published

on

Tanzania has signed a loan agreement with France to finance water supply projects that will benefit about 770,000 people in the country’s Morogoro municipality.

The French government will extend the loan worth about $76 million to Tanzania through its French Development Agency (AFD), according to Dotto James, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Finance and Planning who signed the agreement on behalf of Tanzania.

“Upon completion, the water supply in the Morogoro municipality will increase from the current 37,000 cubic meters a day to 108,000 cubic meters a day,” James told a press conference following a signing ceremony in Morogoro.

AFD Country Representative for Tanzania, Stephanie Mouen says the project will improve the well-being of the people in the municipality and it will also improve the environment.

Copyright News Central

All rights reserved. This post and other digital content on this website may not be reproduced, published, broadcasted, rewritten or redistributed in whole or in part without prior express written permission from News Central.

Tell your story the right way

Have you witnessed a news worthy event? Want to become our citizen journalist and tell your own stories?

Send your stories to us or contact us via:
Email: Click to email us
Social media: Twitter and Facebook @NewsCentralTV
WhatsApp: Text or call +234 901 190 0000 .

New stories delivered to your phone

Click here to have news stories delivered to your phone or mail. You can also share your stories with us. Join our mailing list here.

Continue Reading

Business News

Uganda approves return of over 2,500 nationals stranded abroad

Published

on

Over 2,500 Ugandan nationals stranded abroad amid the Covid-19 pandemic can now return home as approved by the Ugandan cabinet.

The cabinet on Monday, agreed that Ugandan nationals trapped in 66 countries can return home at their own cost.

The government is making arrangements with the UN World Food Program (WFP) to fly the stranded citizens home, Judith Nabakooba, the country’s minister for information, communication technology and national guidance says, adding that all the returning citizens will have to undergo a 14-day mandatory institutional quarantine. 

President Yoweri Museveni last month, directed Prime Minister Ruhakana Rugunda to study the possibility of evacuating dozens of citizens stranded abroad amid Covid-19 pandemic travel restrictions. 

To contain the spread of Covid-19, the country on March 22 suspended all incoming flights, except cargo flights. 

Copyright News Central

All rights reserved. This post and other digital content on this website may not be reproduced, published, broadcasted, rewritten or redistributed in whole or in part without prior express written permission from News Central.

Tell your story the right way

Have you witnessed a news worthy event? Want to become our citizen journalist and tell your own stories?

Send your stories to us or contact us via:
Email: Click to email us
Social media: Twitter and Facebook @NewsCentralTV
WhatsApp: Text or call +234 901 190 0000 .

New stories delivered to your phone

Click here to have news stories delivered to your phone or mail. You can also share your stories with us. Join our mailing list here.

Continue Reading

Trending