Opposition UDF acting president Lilian Patel on Sunday snubbed a political rally which former party leader Atupele Muluzi held in Blantyre as power struggle in the former ruling party rages.
The power struggle was ignited by Muluzi’s body language which shows he wants to come back into politics and lead the party which his father, Bakili Muluzi, formed as a pressure group to fight Kamuzu Banda’s one party autocratic rule.
The rally promotion advertisements indicated that Patel would be at the Nyambadwe rally but she did not show up.
She is also on record angrily saying she will not vie for the party presidency during the convention following Atupele Muluzi’s decision to return to his party presidency position and lead the party into the 2025 polls.
In his speech at the rally, Muluzi said he was grateful for the calls asking for him to get back into active politics and contest at the next United Democratic Front (UDF) convention.
He thanked Patel for holding the party together after he stepped back from active politics.
“Let us continue to give her support until the next party convention, where we will elect our next leaders for the next five years.
“I would like to ask the party leadership to allow people who would like to join the party to help us rebuild,” he said.
Commenting further on UDF supporters’ calls for him to get back on the steering wheel, Muluzi said: “Last week people led by our regional governor (south) Dorothy masinga, marched to my house asking me to bounce back into active politics. The petition gave me seven days to respond to the wishes of the people.
“As you know, this issue has been in circulation for a while as UDF will be having its convention soon. I would like to ask the regional governor for the request and I want to assure you that I am there to fight for you and I will die for you.”
Muluzi went on to call on people who would like to get back into the party to do so now and not later.
“I would like to ask people who left the party to come back, time to come back to the party is now and not wait until we get somewhere and you will be there saying,you were fighting with us but underground.
“Let us not bar those who would like to come and join us including the youth,” he said.
Muluzi also appealed to the youth to show interest and contest for positions at the next elective conference of the party and in the 2025 General Elections.
“As we are heading to the polls as a country in 2025, I would like to ask young people in the party to pick positions and contest in order to contribute positively to the development of the country,” emphasised Muluzi.
Speakers at the UDF mega rally in Blantyre said the party feels vindicated that running government does not need rookies.
The party’s organizing secretary, Abubakar Mbaya, Ken Ndanga and Dorothy Masinga said this is demonstrated in empty promises that were made during campaign period such as, one million jobs, access to meals three times a day and access to loans for youths and women.
The party top brass said Muluzi was the answer to all the challenges and unfulfilled promises Malawians are looking for.
UDF regional governor Dorothy Masinga, said party members want Atupele Muluzi to return to active party politics and carry the torch in the 2025 elections as president.