By Madando Speaks
If there is a situation that sums up Mlaka Maliros’ Vinyo watha song, then the predicament that the once Mighty UTM is facing tells it all- the party is nosediving to the ground at the speed greater than that of lighting. Let no propaganda downplay the exit of the pillar for UTM in the past 12 months, one Frank Tumpale Mwenefumbo.
Frank Tumpale Mwenefumbo, the face of UTM party officially announced on Tuesday that he had downed his tools and was no longer a member of UTM. While the nation appeared surprised, many political brains were not surprised, they saw it coming and in all honesty, the writing has been on the wall for some time.
In his letter of resignation addressed to Party Secretary, Mwenefumbo says he has resigned in order to live a private life and concentrate on his farming business at his village. Mwenefumbo further says he had already explained his decision to the party president Saulos Chilima last month and he accepted.
UTM is a party that has refused to grow it’s structures ,instead choosing to ride on its popularity on social media platforms. Since joining Tonse Alliance the party appears to have lost direction as a unit, rather focusing on one individual and hoping it will ride at the back of his popularity and likeability. That individual is UTM leader Saulos Chilima. Unfortunately for UTM, the fortunes of Chilima himself have dwindled in value and he is now merely reduced to a clueless leader fighting for his political survival with corruption cases looming on his head.
Let’s also not forget the cry of many UTM members since the party got in power,the abandonment of the footsoldiers who worked tirelessly for the party. Chilima is known to have only accommodated his close friends and family leaving out some pillars that made UTM strong. Loyalty , when stretched has its limitations. When Frank Mwenefumbo was drafted in to become the party spokesperson, the cracks within the party were already wide, there was increasing disconnect between the party grassroots and it’s leader who appeared to have abandoned the ship that was his flagship in his quest for power that gave him the Vice Presidency. Kudos to Mwenefumbo, he handled his position so we’ll in that he gave the party some sense of direction.
As time went on, it has increasingly become obvious that UTM had lost its vibrancy and relevance. The Party has members who believe it’s Vice President Michael Usi isn’t UTM enough. Even the ever vocal Secretary General Patricia Kaliati herself has restrained herself from being on the very front of the party . As for Chilima, well, he has basically abandoned the party.
No wonder , political veterans like Mwenefumbo are able to sniff from a distance and are able to separate the wheat from the chaff. Surely he has smelt that what has remained in UTM is nothing but Masanje ( children play).
With MCP increasingly dominating the Tonse Alliance, Chilima still under the shadow of Zuneth Sattar corruption allegations, it’s not looking good for the party. Few weeks ago,it’s vibrant social media team left the party to become what they call “Independent Media Team” . Since then, they have relentlessly hammered the party , tarnishing it’s image and that of its leader Chilima.
There is no denying that UTM is a sinking ship at the moment.