United Democratic Front (UDF) presidential torch bearer Atupele Muluzi's running mate Frank Tumpale Mwenifumbo over the weekend went flat out, drumming support and canvassing votes for the party presidential candidate on 'new beginning' political mantra.
On Sunday, Mwenifumbo was at Chithiba in Mtunthama, Kasungu where he unpacked the UDF manifesto, making it simple to understand before a sizeable crowd.
The charismatic former Karonga central legislator said once voted back into power, the UDF shall improve the tobacco industry in favour of Malawian tobacco grower.
"The UDF shall not allow tobacco buyers to grow tobacco as well because this will be conflict of interest, this is unfair trade, UDF would not allow trade monopoly at the expense of poor Malawian tobacco growers," said Mwenifumbo.
He said tobacco buyers' mandate is to buy the tobacco at auction floors.
However, the flamboyant veteran politician said the UDF-led government would encourage foreign tobacco buyers to diversify in other crops such as legume farming.
Mwenifumbo also told the attentive crowd in the tobacco growing district that at the beginning of every selling season, the government shall determine the minimum prices of tobacco.
"We shall also encourage contract farming, not the present arrangement which disadvantages the poor tobacco grower but we shall review and adopt an Act which conforms with the convention on tobacco. A buyer and seller must agree on terms," he said.
The UDF running mate said the terms of tobacco currently does not favour the tobacco grower, saying in the new Act, the grower will be given a fair deal.
Mwenifumbo also promised that once voted into government, the UDF shall increase the tax free band from the current K40, 000 to K150, 000 in a bid to increase disposable income among people.
He also said the UDF government would give incentives in order to encourage both civil servants and those working in the private sector own their own houses before they retire.
"In order to make the dream of middle income come true, the UDF led government shall make the dream of house ownership to come a reality for Malawians especially those in middle income groups," he said.
The politician-cum-businessman said the UDF shall underwrite capital market development financing so that many Malawians, especially those in the teaching and state security organs are able to own dream houses.
Mwenifumbo said this will be done to encourage people buy and own houses before they retire so that the pension money could be used for food and other essentials in life rather than spend all the retirement money on buying or constructing a house.
Read the original article on Nyasa Times.
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