Malawi Congress Party (MCP) Deputy Secretary General (SG), Gerald Kazembe, has trashed and laughed off the ‘forgiving spirit’ Mangochi Monkey lawmaker Ralph Jooma had demonstrated by instructing “my lawyer not to proceed with this petition purely on humanitarian grounds”.
Jooma told local media last week that he had ‘forgiven’ Kazembe from whom the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) legislator was claiming over K20 million as legal costs in a case where the MCP Vice SG was challenging the election of the former in the May 2019 parliamentary elections.
In an interview with one of the local daily papers, the lawmaker said he had he would not proceed with his claim for the said amount ‘purely on humanitarian grounds’.
“I have instructed my lawyer not to proceed with this petition purely on humanitarian grounds,” said Jooma.
But this has not gone down well with Kazembe, who challenged that he did not need any forgiven because “my case against the Malawi Electoral Commission is not yet over on the election of Jooma”.
Kazembe stated that he still has a strong conviction that Jooma won the seat through a “shambolically managed 2019 election, using Tippex to illegally enter Parliament with 9, 341 Tippex aided votes against my 9, 052 votes”.
“For this alleged electoral fraud, I will not politically forgive Jooma unless the said fraud is rectified at the Supreme Court of Malawi where the case is awaiting court procedures to be litigated, this time to finality,” said Kazembe in an interview on Monday.
He vowed that he will never allow his opponent to use blackmail and intimidation to justify legitimacy of the parliamentary seat, warning that this could be the genesis of the never-ending political rivalry in Monkey-Bay Constituency.
Jooma recently filed for bankruptcy against Kazembe in the commercial division, claiming that the latter had failed to pay him K20 million in an agreed-upon “party-party” costs.
But Kazembe challenged the bankruptcy application, saying he could not pay any cost when he was still pursuing the case at the Malawi Supreme Court of Appeal.
Kazembe warned Jooma to desist from dramatizing the “misery of the residents of Mangochi Monkey-Bay Constituency”.
“I told you he miscalculated the whole thing. He is observing what we are doing for our people here in our small ways while he remains in his cacoon in Lilongwe and he is scared and rightfully so. Mr. Jooma come home to the constituency. Mr. Jooma, come and serve the people and stop being dramatic, and stop throwing social media tantrums for relevance,” he said.
As if preparing for the next election, Kazembe has embarked on a borehole drilling project in the constituency. So far, 47 boreholes have been drilled in the area.
He also providing transportation and logistical assistance to the Affordable Input Programme (AIP) to ensure the beneficiaries access the inputs within their residential areas.