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I’m surrounded by Judases and fortune seekers, says Malawi’s Mutharika

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President Peter Mutharika says he knows that he is surrounded by some “fortune seekers” who could dump him if he was not in power.

Mutharika made the remarks in Mulanje after commissioning the construction of the $23.5 million (about K17 billion) Likhubula Water Supply System project which is expected to help Blantyre Water Board pump water from Mulanje mountain.

Mutharika said he is aware of what some of his party members were planning following rumours of his health while in United States of America after being away from the country for a month.

“I know that I have some Judases around me. Just like what happened when my brother Bingu died, some left the party before my brother was buried. But let me assure you that I am strong enough to seek re-election come 2019,” said the 76-year-old leader.

“I know what was happening while I was enjoying my coffee in America. Let me also take this opportunity to inform those who thought I would be dead by now that I will call them when am about to die. But for now, I am enjoying my good and robust health,” charged Mutharika.

Earlier on, DPP’s Regional Governor for the South, Charles Mchacha, MP, attacked other party officials for failing to support Mutharika.

Garrulous Mchacha said he is aware of some DPP big gurus who are not loyal to the party and are busy formulating parallel structures within the party.

“I am aware of some DPP officials who are not doing their job as true members of the mighty DPP. Let me ask you the President to allow me deal with these party officials as regional governor . Some of us were born to support you and we don’t want to see you being castigated by others,” said Mchacha receiving applause from a section of DPP women.

Apparently Minister of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water George Chaponda is the one busy campaigning to succeed President Mutharika and has intensified his engagement with party machinery.

But Mchacha did not mention names.

Observers says what transpired in Mulanje are real signs of cracks within the party.

The President left for the United States in September to address a U.N. gathering. The lack of information after that prompted demands for him to explain what critics called his “absence without leave.”

He returned with the right hand paralysed but he blamed that on “slight rheumatism” in his shoulder and injections to treat it.

The President is now able to use his hands freely and brags being fit and well, saying doctors told him his vital organs are like those of a 30-year-old.

Speaking at Pasani Primary School ground after unveiling the project’s plaque at Likhubula Forest ground, Mutharika described the project, which got line of credit from the Exim Bank of India to finance it, as a big national investment and is part of a bigger plan to develop Malawi.

He also tackled the current hunger and electricity supply problems the country is experiencing by outlining what government is doing to address the issues.

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