Monday, March 28, 2011
John Zenus Ungapake Tembo: Peter Mutharika Is Not Fit For President
Malawi Congress Party (MCP) president, John Zenus Ungapake Tembo, reveals to Zachimalawi that Democratic Progressive Party's (DPP) suggested Presidential candidate, Peter Mutharika, is not "fit for President, let alone the Vice Presidency of Malawi". Tembo, speaking for the first time on Peter's capabilities, said the younger Mutharika has shown, as Minister of Education, Science and Technology, that he is far-detached from national matters. The MCP Tsar cited the on-going stand-off between University of Malawi (read, Chancellor College and Malawi Polytechnic) lecturers and Police Inspector General Peter Mukhitho over the summoning of Chancellor College Associate Professor, Dr. Blessings Chinsinga. This followed a class room example Chinsinga is said to have given, relating to how the situation in Egypt (people's protests and subsequent resignation of the country's president, Hosni Mubarak) to the impact of people power. This prompted President Bingu wa Mutharika's former bodyguard, now Police Inspector General, Peter Mukhitho to summon Chinsinga for a 'one-on-one' chat at his (Mukhitho's) house in Zomba. However, the development angered Chanco (as Chancellor College is popularly known) Academic Staff, and forced them to get glued to their chairs for almost two months now. What has buffled government, throwing it into a legal confusion of sorts, is the fact that the lecturers continue to do other duties, save lecturing. Government, at least through the University of Malawi Council (employers of the Academic Staff) argues that the lecturers' principle duty is to lecture, and that the rest comes second. President Mutharika has spread oil on the lecturers' feathers by declaring, twice now (first at Police Training School in Limbe, and secondly during the launch of Rab Processors buscuit factory- all these two institutions located in Malawi's commercial city, Blantyre) that his former skin-watcher (who now watches Mutharika's back as Police Chief, protecting it from ill-intentioned people) "will not apologise; I repeat, Inspector General of Police Mukhitho wil not apology. Him apologising is like me, as the Commander-in-Chief of the Malawi Police Service, apologising". Attorney General Jane Ansah tried to negotiate over the weekend, and camne back with only mad in her reconciliation, out-of-court-settlement, basin. Now, Tembo has capitalised on the stand-off to spill his mind on the capabilities of Peter Mutharika. "He is not fit for president of this country; look, he is the Education Minister , but he has chosen to back his ill-advised brother. This is affecting poor Malawian children. By the way, do we a Mutharika at any of the University of Malawi constituent colleges? No. That is why both Peter and Bingu are behaving like people out of touch with reality," says Tembo. He reveals that this is the reason he would love to have another go at the presidency. "We are in a mess now; I wish I could clear this mess, end dictatorial tendencies, and bring back real freedom. This is not Ngwazi Dr. Hastings Kamuzu Banda would have preferred. Nothing like this happened during Kamuzu's time- a stand-off with no end in sight? No, it never happened," said Tembo, himself a Member of Parliament (MP) for this Blogger. Tembo is MP for Dedza South Constituency and a veteran Malawian politician who, as fate would have it, may never be the chief tenant at either Sanjika Palace in Blantyre, or the New State House in Lilongwe. He has tried, but, now, even his trusted party zealots like Nancy Tembo want him out of the MCP hot seat. "As far as I am concerned, I am here (in politics) for a while; at least, until this political and governance mess is cleared up," says Tembo.