LILONGWE (Muchanakhwaye Khwepeya, Malawi NewsNow )- Leader of Opposition Dr Lazarus Chakwera has asked President Peter Mutharika resign accusing him of failing to take full stock of the state of the country’s economy, food situation, security, social welfare, governance and other national issues.
Chakwera told National Assembly that Mutharika’s address to the House last Friday was “an insult to the Malawians that employed him” who wanted to hear from their leader how bad things are and what he is doing about it.
“ Even if he decided that it was too early to give a proper State of the Nation address given that his last one was only six months ago, Malawians deserve to hear a full report on the progress being made on the multitude of promises he claimed his government was fulfilling when he stood here in May,” says Chakwera.
Among the issues Chakwera wanted the President to address were a progress report on the status of the forensic report on the K577 billion in public funds not accounted for between 2009 and December 31 2014 as established by PricewaterhouceCoopers (PwC) in May this year, progress on the investigations into the murder of Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) official Issa Njauju, but also an outline of the short to long-term policies for the House to consider and debate in the 46th session.
The leader of opposition and Malawi Congress Party (MCP) president, declared his response to the President’s speech as a ‘state of the nation’ address.
“ Mr Speaker Sir, because the President has failed to set the record straight about the poor performance of the country and his leadership, I stand here to do it. Because his government has no plan by which to call Malawians to actions that will get us out of this mess, we must all put our heads together here to offer him ideas.
“ We simply cannot afford to let the ship we are sailing on to sink in these troubled economic waters simply because the captain does not know the way to our destiny or how to navigate troubled waters,” says Chakwera.
“We cannot afford to let the Executive, with its 20 strong cabinet plus a congregation of 20 plus so-called advisors, leave our children at the mercy of its endless comedy of errors. It is unfortunate that the people have no means to fire the whole administration, and indeed a wonder that the whole lot has not resigned.”
Chakwera says not only are the DPP government failing to solve Malawi problems, but they themselves have become a problem.
“Mr Speaker Sir, Malawians were told that 2015 will be a great year, that the economy will rebound, but do we see this greatness on the streets today? Do Malawians feel the rebound at the market? Do they feel it in the minibuses? What about at the hospital? What about at the farm? What about in the rest of the social sectors? Where is the comprehensive assessment of how the nation is doing in all these sectors? Where is the outline of the short, medium, and long term policies and strategies the Executive proposes for this House’s consideration and debate to address the suffering of Malawians?”
Chakwera also accuses Mutharika’s “failure” to engage Development Partners by resolving outstanding bottlenecks and repeatedly claiming that the age of donor aid is over when he also repeatedly complains about the lack of direct budget support and repeatedly acknowledges the impact of the aid development partners are giving through other channels in the country.
“Mr SpeakerSir, what is over is not the age of donor aid, but the age of donor aid being given to people who cannot be trusted. This President has given our development partners no confidence that he can cut down spending, or balance the budget, or get rid of waste, or crack down on criminal acts of greed and corruption perpetrated in the government of his own party. That is why he cannot make a case for direct budget support.
“But if the Government won’t make the case for the ordinary Malawians, who will? If the President won’t make a case for the Malawian people before this August House, where does he plan to do it?”
Chakwera says the DPP government has employed many “Ministers of Misinformation” to cover their blunders.
“Mr Speaker Sir, I wish all Malawians to know that every time the DPP Government makes a misleading public statement to malign the opposition by starting a storm in a teacup, the goal is to divert attention from their own abuse of public resources and from the decimation their policies are causing in the private sector.”
Chakwera says Mutharika has admitted of being clueless, saying when the Council for Foreign Relations in New York asked the President about what is being done about Issa Njauju’s murder investigation, the entire President said was that “the murder was a professional job and was very complicated to solve”
He says if Mutharika is admitting that Malawi problems are too complicated for him to solve, “then why are you clinging to the office you hold?”
Therefore, Chakwera says, the honourable things left for Mutharika is to resign and pave way for competent leaders to govern Malawi declaring that “A better Malawi demands a better plan under better leadership.”