Itsanana:Chakwera Takes Over Reins of Power
As Winston Mwale writes, Chakwera's victory 'itsanana (it's an honour) that has reignited the dream of our nation’s founders for a New Malawi
After painstakingly staying in opposition for more than a quarter of a century, Malawi Congress Party (MCP) has bounced back into government, thanks to 'All of Us' (Tonse Alliance).
The alliance, which included the then estranged Vice President Saulos Chilima, breathed new life into the MCP.
Lazarus Chakwera, who was the grouping's torchbearer, actually managed to get votes in areas that were deemed anti-MCP all along, for example Ntcheu, which always voted for either Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), or United Democratic Front (UDF) since the 1990's.
Many have attributed this to what they call #Chilima Effect"!
After getting kicked out of government in 1994, MCP has been trying to wrestle back power, but to no avail.
At one time, the party even partnered with its sworn enemy former President Bakili Muluzi in 2009.
Still, the party never got voted into government.
That Malawi's oldest party would one day crawl back into power was farfetched dream...until this year, thanks to Chilima Effect.
At one time the former President Peter Mutharika had the audacity to say this, "Chakwera will never be president of Malawi. I will never allow Chakwera to rule. Over my dead body."
Of course, Mutharika is not dead, at least as we write this piece.
Like the old French peasant who made the sad observation after the collapse of France in World War 2, burdened with social subsidies, DPP cadets, including Mutharika himself, must be moaning, "Our party fell because we had come to consider Malawi as a cow to be milked and not a watch dog to be fed. "
Apparently knowing there are many who are now living in fear after his ascendence to power, Chakwera has reached out everyone, including his detractors.
"I know that there are many of you who did not vote for me in this election, and perhaps the prospect of my presidency fills you with fear and grief. But I want you to remember one thing: This new Malawi is a home for you too, and so long as I am its President, it will be a home in which you too will prosper. I only ask you for one thing in return: To give Dr. Chilima and I a chance to earn your trust and make this win a win for all of us," he said.
Amid ululations from those who thronged his swearing-in ceremony, the country's new leader said, " pledge to run Malawi well, for that is the surest path to Tsogolo Labwino, a path that has long been in ruins, riddled with the potholes of greed and corruption. In making this pledge, I am accepting this call to serve you with joy and holy fear, for I am duty bound to God and all of you to give it my best."
In an election that many have desribed as free, fair and credible, the Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) declared Tonse Alliance torchbearer, Lazarus Chakwera as the winner of Tuesday's fresh presidential election.
MEC Chairperson Justice Chifundo Kachale says Chakwera scooped 2, 604, 043 votes, representing 58.5 percent of the total votes cast.
On the other hand, the former president Peter Mutharika of the DPP/UDF alliance came second after amassing 1,751, 877 votes.
Mbakuwaku Movement for Development candidate Peter Kuwani cane third with 33,456 votes.
Out of the 6 859 570 registered voters, 4 445 699 cast their votes.
The Commission recorded 57 323 null and void votes, representing 1.29 percent.
According the MEC chairperson, the commission recieved and resolved 10 complaints from all three participating sides.
In his own words, Chakwera's victory 'is an honour that has reignited the dream of our nation’s founders for a New Malawi."