One biggest advantage President Bingu wa Mutharika and his ruling Democratic Progressive Party has over all political parties, is that they face one of the most fractious opposition parties in the country. They are split both internally-that is within own parties just are so different even in party colours.
Take the example of the latest spat from Joyce Bsnda- Vice President of Malawi who heads the opposition Peoples Party and the Peoples Democratic Movement (PDM), instead of opening doors that could see the parties either merge or work out all details early, Banda believes time will be ripe for discussions in 2013 when it would be normally very late to make proper concessions.
The opposition in Malawi has consistently won the elections save for 2009 but has never gone into Government due to the split they always encourage and mostly based on personal greed.
In 1999, John Tembo frustrated his then Party President Gwanda Chaukamba after he was dumped as a running mate for the President of Alliance for Democracy Chakufwa Chihana.
The United Democratic Front then a ruling party did extremely well even in urban and rural areas taking seats in Dedza, Salima, Nkhotakota and Lilongwe which cemented its majority in the Southern Region.
Chakuamba did well in the North and South while his party managed to get more seats in the Central Region.
In 2004, Brown Mpinganjira of National Democratic Alliance, independent Justin Malewezi, John Tembo of Malawi Congress Party and Gwanda Chakuamba of Mgwirizano Coalition amassed over 60 percent of the total votes, but shared them individual paving way for UDF's Bingu wa Mutharika to get the covered prize.
Rumphi Central voters will be selecting a new parliamentarian in a very important bye-election which is mainly a litmus test of the popularity of DPP after it swept clean the whole Northern Region.
There are many issues that would make you bet that DPP is set to lose the seat it has occupied since 2009, the first after the three previous elections gave it to the Alliance for Democracy.
Norman Nyirenda's only quality is that also worked with the late Chakufwa Chihana, but he is facing Chihana's son who is trying to replace his multiparty icon dad.
But if it was a two way contest I could have put Money on Enock, but the biggest challenge is that two new parties both claiming to be popular in the North want the same seat. They are Peoples Party and PDM.
I cannot wait to see the results on Wednesday! In venacular we say someone will cry and perhaps a lesson that 2014 anything can happen and have the DPP and its preferred candidate Professor Peter Mutharika remain at State House.
Unless personal greed is not longer an attribute of opposition parties in Malawi, then they can expect to perform! May the best man represent Rumphi Central!