The returnees included Joe Manduwa, who was the very first Member of Parliament to openly advocate for industrial hemp cultivation in the country. Manduwa, then a Deputy Minister of Agriculture in a UDF government is on an independent ticket in Neno South Constituency.
Leckford Thotho, who was at the centre of Bingu wa Mutharika’s attempt to change the half rising sun to a fully risen sun on Malawi National Flag is also trying to come back. He is contesting on an independent ticket in Dowa North East.
At the pick of power ply between Bingu wa Mutharika and the then leader of opposition, John Tembo in the Malawi National Assembly, the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) temporarily dislodged Tembo, replacing him with a youthful Abel Kayembe as leader of opposition in parliament. Kayembe has also filed papers with MEC to contest as an independent candidate in Dowa East.
In Thyolo Thava, there used to be an outspoken legislator in the name of Lifred Nawena. The man is gracing the ballot paper again as an independent candidate.
At one time, a very young politician rose to the admirable portfolios of deputy minister. His name was Phillip Bwanali. He is also attempting a political resurrection in Thyolo North, a constituency he lost in 2009 to Annita Kalinde.
And talking of Annita Kalinde. She is also attempting a come back in the same constituency, this time around on UTM ticket.
Other political returnees are Peter Kaleso, Eta Banda, Billy Kaunda, Augustine Mtendere, Wictor Songazauzu Sajeni, Tarsizio Yetala, Callista Mutharika, Nancy Tembo, Bertha Masiku, Ellock Maotcha Banda, Chimango Mughogho and Ulemu Chilapondwa.
In the MEC list, new comers seem to have also stolen the show from a number of MCP veterans, forcing them to contest as independent candidates. Some of them include Langson Nkhosa Kamwendo, Vitus Dzoole Mwale, Watson Makala Ngozo and Beston Majoni.
Meanwhile, list of celebrities seeking parliamentary seats has gone lower this time around. Apart from maintaining Lucius Banda and Bon Winiko Kalindo, MEC has also confirmed rapper Fredokiss, Samuel Malume Bokosi of ‘akuvulaira mkati’ fame, vernacular poet Felix Njonjonjo Katsoka, footballer Fischer Kondowe, Honjo music creator San B, as Billy Kaunda is also launching a come back bid.
Number of journalists and radio personalities contesting has also reduced to five from eleven in 2014 elections. This time around, its only veteran broadcaster Patrick Kamkwatira, ZBS’s sport scribe Mike Bango, MBC’s duo of Bashir Amin and Mc Arthur Mmanga and Gerald Viola who are contesting.