Msonda says he is foot soldier

Malawi Vice-President Joyce Banda’s People’s Party (PP) on Thursday welcomed into its fold Ken Msonda, a former UDF deputy publicity secretary.

Msonda ditched UDF on Tuesday claiming he wanted to reflect and strategise on his political career.

Banda, who is PP’s interim president, welcomed Msonda at the party’s headquarters off Chikhwawa Road in Blantyre.

She described Msonda as a seasoned politician.

Said Banda: “I am very excited to welcome Mr. Ken Msonda. Ken is a seasoned politician. He has fought gallantly for the protection of democracy in the country.”

When asked if Msonda is not the type of recycled politicians filling her party’s hierarchy, Banda said: “I have in the past 12 months worked with recycled politicians. In fact, they are only five percent of the [PP] executive. They have shared their experiences and built the party which has registered about two million members. It is better for the party.”

Msonda described himself as “a foot soldier” and that the party will benefit from his vast experience.

He argued he has joined PP because “it is a party of inclusiveness”.

“[PP is] the party that has the welfare of the people at heart and is geared to fight against poverty through rural and industrial development, job creation, economic empowerment of the poor and underprivileged and  infrastructural development,” he said.

He said he feels sorry that some people claim “Malawi is not ready for a female president”, in an apparent reference to Banda’s perceived bid for the presidency in 2014.

“That is deliberate distortion of facts, a political propaganda by those who feel you [Banda] are a threat to their political ambitions,” said Msonda.

Banda formed PP early last year after being expelled from the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) where she served as first vice-president to President Bingu wa Mutharika. She was accused of forming parallel structures.

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