Leader of opposition in Parliament Lazarus Chakwera has criticised the State of the Nation Address delivered by President Peter Mutharika at Parliament in Lilongwe on Friday, saying it was too short and lacked substance.
Mutharika made an historic 25 minute address to parliament when he opened a 46th session of the National Assembly.
“It is just too short. There was a lot of information we expected from him especially in recovery plan for the economy,” said Chakwera in an interview soon after the President’s address.
Mutharika broke the record for making just a 25 minute state of the nation address as opposed to the tradition two hours.
Chakwera said he will say much on Monday when he will take the floor in the 193 strong House to respond to the address.
Virginia Palmer, US ambassador to Malawi welcomed the address, saying it was to the point and factual.
Writing on her Facebook wall, veteran lady journalist, Suzgo Khunga of the Nation Publications Limited, who has covered parliament for many years, said this was the first time in her career she heard a 25 minute state of the nation address.
Among several issues, Mutharika said his administration is now getting tougher on medical drug thefts on public hospitals, hinting the malpractice is now on the decline.
Palmer this week warned the US would pull out its massive malaria drug aid package if government failed to address rampant drug theft.
“We are also arranging to amend the Pharmacy, Medicines and Poisons Act in order to strengthen the legal framework for punishing those who steak drugs,” he said.
“Time for stealing medicine is over!”
The President said there are enough drugs in stock.
Mutharika entered the chamber amid shouts of boma! boma! from the government benches and silence from the opposition.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :