Ruling party loses crucial by election
As President Bingu wa Mutharika was putting the finishing touches to his new Cabinet, in the north of the country his ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) was losing a crucial by election.
Son of a former democracy campaigner, Enoch Chihana, won the Rumphi Central parliamentary by-election with 6,641 votes for the small opposition party, the Alliance for Democracy. The ruling DPP party candidate, Norman Nyirenda took 3,275 votes.
Meanwhile, Vice President Joyce Banda launched her new party, the People’s Party (PP), who also stood in the by-election and their candidate, Chidumba Mkandawire, came a close third with 2,832 votes.
The poll has been widely reported as an embarrassment to the president and the ruling party who have faced riots and unrest particularly amongst the youth of Malawi.