A Guide Into MCP Primary Elections in LL Msinja South
As Malawi Congress Party (MCP) is set to hold a primary election in Lilongwe Msinja South constituency this Saturday, 27 February, here is what you need to know about the constituency and candidates contesting in the primaries.
The parliamentary seat for the area fell vacant following the death of veteran MCP legislator Lingson Belekanyama who served as a lawmaker for the area for 17 years.
Traditionally the area is regarded as an MCP Stronghold and had a total of 34,816 voters in the tripartite elections and court-sanctioned fresh presidential elections.
The primary elections are being held to identify a flag-bearer of the ruling party ahead of the 30 March by-election to be held also in six other constituencies and two wards following deaths and court nullifications.
Twelve people have expressed interest to contest on MCP ticket in the area and there is a potential threat of some candidates going independent emanating from primary elections fallout.
The constituency’s major challenge is poor road networks as evidenced by the lack of tarmac roads which makes the roads impassable during the rainy season and there is no boarding secondary school too in the area.
The event will take place at Kalesi primary school and a secret ballot will be used as one way of preventing voter intimidation by the aspirants and also adhering to the coronavirus pandemic preventive measures.
The candidates have signed a code of conduct pledging to accept results and support the winner but if history is anything to go by such pledges have proven to be ineffectual and largely get ignored as some opt to go independent after losing.
Regardless of whoever wins the primaries, he will have to battle it out with a horde of party-aligned independent candidates who could potentially split the vote in favor of a dark horse on the ballot paper.
The primaries will start at 9 am and here are the names of candidates vying for the MCP ticket: Francis Belekanyama, Jones Yamikani Chadza, Amos Chibwana, Lefinosi Omigo Chigamula, Fanizo Kabwazi, Lameck Kondesi, Henrick Chidzumeni Kunkeyani, Sam Mbendera, Walinase Mkonda, Hasten Mlinde, Herman Yokonia Mvula, and Symon Pondani.
By Joshua Mphanda, MEC Stringer