Malawi government has restricted diplomats and heads of international organisations accredited to the country that they cannot willy-nilly meet President Peter Mutharika.
In a correspondence to the diplomatic community under Note No. 05/2016 which Nyasa Times has seen, the Ministry OF Foreign Affairs said all appointments with the Head of State “can only be granted” in the case when presenting their Letters of Credence or when they are taking leave of the President of at the end of their tour of duty.
Government also said an appointment with President Mutharika can be granted when the Heads of Mission have been designated by their Heads of State as a Special Envoy the President.
“The Ministry has noted that some Diplomatic Missions and International Organizations directly contact government ministries or departments to get or pass on information, including requests for appointment with government officials,” reads the note.
The correspondence said the diplomatic mission and international organizations should be reminded that all communication to government ministries and department should be directed to the ministry on Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation “for onward transmission to the intended destinations.”
According to the letter, Ministries and Government Departments have been directed “not to accept any direct communication” with the diplomatic missions and International Organizations.
The Ministry -which is headed by George Chaponda – said requests for appointments should be made 10 working days prior to the proposed date of meeting “in order to allow adequate time for processing and provision of feedback.”
The diplomats have also been told that even seasonal greeting cards, goodwill messages and letters addressed to President Mutharika should be submitted to the Ministry of Foreign for onwards transmission to the President, as a matter of procedure.
The restrictions come after government intelligence are linking some diplomats for interfering with domestic politics.
US Embassy in Malawi vehemently denied participating in a plot to unseat President Mutharika and have leader of opposiiton MCP Lazarus Chakwera take over.
The state intelligence findings implicated United States top diplomat Virginia Palmer as aiding the plot for allegedly hosting meetings at her official residence.
But Edward J. Monster, Public Affairs Officer at the U.S. Embassy dismissed the claims and accusations, saying there is no iota of truth.
The United States says it only supports political transitions that are democratic, constitutional, peaceful and legal.
Meanwhile, ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) spokesman, Francis Kasaila said the governing party expects those names in the alleged “coup” plot should prove their innocence.
“Let them come out and exonerate themselves,” said Kasaila, who is also Minister of Transport and government leader in parliament.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :