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Saturday, April 20, 2024

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    The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Member of Parliament for Chitipa South, Welani Chilenga, has resurrected the Age Limit Bill through a notice of under Standing Order 74, in which he shares his intention to move the motion which states as quoted below;

    “Considering that the offices of the State President, First Vice President, and Second Vice President and Members of Parliament, are very demanding and stressful; and bearing in mind the need for more energetic office holders in the said offices, who can be more active to be able to steer state and government business into the right direction and meaningful and visible productivity, this house resolves that a Private Members Bill be introduced in this house to prescribe a maximum age limit for persons to be qualified for nominations into the Office of the State President, First Vice President, and Second Vice President as well as Members of Parliament, by amending section 80 6(b) for the Presidency and Section 51(1) for the Members of Parliament of the constitution respectively.”

    The big question hinges on why such a motion is coming from a DPP lawmaker? What interests do these DPP parliamentarians harbour to the effect of proposing such a bill?

    If the bill which is coming from the opposition side passes, many youthful politicians from the same camp will be among beneficiaries of such constitutional amendment. DPP politicians who hatched this plan likely had this idea in mind. The bill, if successful, will benefit people like Bright Msaka, Dalitso Kabambe, Joseph Mwanamveka, Kondwani Nankhumwa and many other politicians yet to migrate into the league of the octogenarians and beyond.

    In view of the above, it is astounding to learn that some quarters, mostly social media commentators, wrongly preach that the bill in the offing targets the erstwhile president Peter Mutharika who will have attained 85 at the time of voting. Some even allege that MCP is behind the move.

    The truth is that there are some youthful politicians interested in representing DPP in the 2025 tripartite elections, and they are the ones likely behind the bill. We may recall that Hon Nankhumwa made such a proposal at some point and later withdrew it.

    It is without an element of doubt that DPP youthful politicians are behind the machination of the age limit bill.

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