After being appointed by President Peter Mutharika to be Leader of the House, George Chaponda was caught on camera fast asleep during the State of the Nation Address by the Head of State at the State opening of budget session of parliament on Friday.
Chaponda, who is also minister of agriculture and irrigation, is paid to stay awake and listen.
In his address titled ‘Towards recovering and sustainable socio-economic development’, President Mutharika gave assuarances that his government will crackdown on corruption after British High Commissioner Michael Nevin observed that the vice has continued spreading since his posting to Malawiin June 2012.
Nevin observes that Malawians are among the victims of the vice as they continue complaining of not getting services without being asked for a bribe.
The British diplomat in his opinion also notes that many governance indicators show a downward trend and the country risks heading down a dangerous road if it fails to bring to justice assailants of the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) senior officer Issa Njauju.
But Mutharika told parliament that his government will ensure that resources and other support are provided to consolidate efforts to tackle corruption in Malawi.
He said government is aware of challenges of resources that the fight against corruption faces.
Mutharika said his government remains “resolute” to prosecute cases involving theft of public funds popularly known as cashgate.
The Malawi leader also disclosed that government will develop the National Prosecution Policy “to provide guidelines for the conduct of public prosecutions by setting standards.”
In his speech, Mutharika said government will establish online case management system and computerized civil registry to improve data management and tracking of case files.
He also said there will beef up the legal department in the ministry of justice.
“We will recruit more lawyers in order to efficiently and effectively deliver services in all spheres of justice delivery,” said Mutharika.
In his opinion, British High Commissioner suggested 10 actions for Malawi to consider as Mutharika sets the tone for fighting corruption.
Among them, the British diplomat suggests a genuine zero-tolerance approach that lowers the bar for firing officials and their advisers with greater emphasis on ethical behaviour expectations and performance.
He also suggests a transparent tendering of all government contracts, including of security equipment, with measures to prevent “insider trading.”Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :