By Our Reporter
Drama might ensue in the embattled opposition, Democratic Progressive Party-DPP as High Court Judge Simeon Mdeza dismisses an application by some senior party members who were trying to push for a stay stopping the party’s National Governing Council-NGC meeting tommorow, Wednesday in Lilongwe.
The senior members include Shadric Namalomba, Chipiliro Mpinganjira, Jean Mathanga and Thom Kamangira who joined the case as interested parties.
In his ruling, Judge Mdedza observes that the claimants’s application came without notice and when there is already a stay of the judgment pending the outcome of an appeal.
Reads his judgment: “The order sought by the interested parties will render the application by the defendants which will be heard on 21/1/24 at 2pm redundant.
“For that reason, I decline to grant the interested parties the stay sought.”
Interestingly, this was one ground that some DPP officials led by the party’s Vice President for the Eastern Region, Bright Msaka mentioned as a potential blockage to the NGC meeting that Secretary General Grezelder Jeffrey had earlier called for.
They argued the meeting would not proceed due to the court application by the interested parties and that the party’s Central Executive Committee didn’t sanction the meeting.
Msaka and others further argued that Jeffrey had no mandate to call for the NGC meeting; claiming their leader Peter Mutharika had not yet responded to her letter dated November 30 2023.
In the said letter, which The Radar has in its possession, Jeffrey told Mutharika she would go ahead calling for the meeting to avoid being in contempt of the court order for the party to hold its convention within 90 days.
This letter followed another one that Jeffrey wrote Mutharika on October 23 2023 seeking his directive on when the Central Executive Committee would meet to map the way forward on the convention issue.
The Radar has since established that the meeting proceeds on Wednesday in Lilongwe with some NGC members confirming receiving invitation letters and their attendance.
Among others, the meeting intends to appoint committee members to begin preparations for the much awaited convention. It is however not yet clear whether those protesting Jeffrey’s decision will attend the meeting or not.
DPP and Mutharika spokesperson Shadric Namalomba has not spoken to us yet on the latest turn of events. On July 3 this year, the NGC meeting in Mangochi resolved to hold the convention in 2024.
However, Mdeza nullified the resolution after the party failed to respect a court order to hold dully constituted NGC and Central committee meetings within reasonable time in accordance with the DPP constitution.
Meanwhile, political and governance experts continue calling on Mutharika to rise up and show genuine leadership to avoid any further divisions and differences in the party that might completely bury their dream of returning to power during the 2025 general elections.
At a recent media briefing at his Page House Residence in Mangochi, Mutharika blasted President Lazarus Chakwera for allegedly failing to run state affairs and pledged his party would take over after the coming elections to rescue struggling Malawians.
The party’s house has seen no peace after losing the court sanctioned presidential poll in June 2020. This is despite producing a functional review report that remains dusted though it clearly spelt out what led to their loss and recommendations to bounce back.