United Democratic Front (UDF) presidential candidate Atupele Muluzi on Wednesday launched a ‘Jubilee Movement’ to champion transformational change as the country’s turns 50 years since it became independent, calling on Malawians to proudly assume responsibility for articulating their vision and seek homegrown solutions while building smart partnerships.
Atupele launched the ‘Jubilee Movement’ at Sunbird Mount Soche Hotel in Blantyre, the ceremony which attracted various business captains including former Reserve Bank Governor Victor Mbewe.
Director of Ceremonies , Fawzia Osman also invited various speakers who gave their presentations on Genders Issues, Women Empowerment, Entrepreneurship, and Youth in Development in relation to the past 50 years and the future by Dr. Jessie Kabwila, Faustace Chirwa, Henry Kachaje and Professor Wiseman Chijere Chirwa.
In his address, Atupele said ‘Jubilee Movement’ is “a revolution which seeks to make our people’s aspirations and dreams a reality”, saying it will help create wealth and empower women to fully participate in all political, social and economic spaces.
The UDF president said the movement seeks to ensure that Malawians have the vision, purpose and clarity to ensure that there’s access to food, clean water, and quality education, affordable and quality health care, among others.
“Malawi needs to keep up in addressing its structural challenges so that it can also fly with fellow eagles. We need to deliver on faster structural transformation, inclusive growth and job creation, better management of natural resources and stronger financial sectors.
“Within these areas, we need to identify our drivers for change and transformation, critical to unlocking our development potential. For example, our demographic trends show that a growing young population which, if provided with jobs and other incentives, will drive this economy to exponential heights,” he asserted.
Atupele said the movement will reach out to all Malawians across the country to raise awareness and mobilize fellow citizens for change.
“To build our strength and leverage, we will invest time and resources to consolidate the legitimacy of the Movement, groom new leaders and maintain the Movement’s public profile across the region and internationally.”
He conceded that “galvanising this Movement will be no easy feat”, but said “I am confident that this is a long term investment that resonates with all Malawians from all walks of life.”
In her address, Ruth Takomana, leader of Jubilee Movement said they will rejuvenate Malawians to change their mind set using the New Agenda for Change.
“This will be achieved through sensitizing the people at all levels up to the grass root on the need for change in transforming this country from a dependency nation to a truly independent nation with effective and visionary leadership. Leadership that is responsive to global changes. Leadership that will be accountable to its people.
“This is the point where we need to change and consider involving women and the youth to take leading roles in transforming this country with policies that will benefit all Malawians. Age is not the question rather it is the positive impact that the age can bring to the meaningful and tangible development of a country,” she said.
In his presentation, Professor Chijere Chirwa of University of Malawi, said the country is off track and that some should stand up to get it back on track.
He observed that Malawians remained poor in the past 49 years, pointing out that July 2014 should be the cutting point for placing “old Malawi behind us and new Malawi ahead of us.”
He said the country require new leadership at all levels including academic institutions.
“We fought for change, we have the change, but is this the change wanted? 2014 is offering us an opportunity to put the old Malawi behind us by electing visionary leaders.
“Fifty years haven’t benefited the youth, women, disabled and those in opposition. If the poor have not benefited, then who have benefited? It’s the same people over and over or nobody has benefited.
“Malawi needs an overhaul; you cannot continue have the very same people in government. Why recycling the same people from one parastatal to another,” queried Chirwa, attracting applause especially from university students (The Polytechnic and Chancellor College).
Chirwa urged Malawians not to discredit Muluzi because of his age. He said Muluzi, who turns 35 in August 2013, needs support from all Malawians of goodwill to ably advance his ‘Agenda for Change’.
“The ‘Agenda for Change’ shouldn’t be seen as Atupele’s but take it as Malawi’s agenda not for the past but for the future,” he added.
Dr Kabwila said Jubilee Movement should reflect on ordinary women who for the last 50 years have been subjected to all sorts of injustices and maginalisation.
“We need a government that will look at gender as a process and not an event,” said the academician from Chancellor College of the University of Malawi.
Kabwila said it was sad that people think they can make quick money from donors pretending to be promoting gender issues when the impact on the ground is nonexistent.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :