Leader of Opposition Lazarus Chakwera spoke for Malawians in Parliament on Wednesday when he described President Peter Mutharika’s State of the Nation address as empty grandstanding and another campaign rally speech.
We all know we voted last year and the time for campaigning went with that process. What Malawians expect, therefore, is for the DPP to govern and govern well.
And governing does not entail making more empty promises and claiming that you have fulfilled some. Which promises have been fulfilled and how have they been fulfilled?
As far as I am concerned, all DPP flagship programmes such as cement and iron sheets subsidy (basically a response to Joyce Banda’s Mudzi Transformation Initiative in which she built houses for the poor), community colleges and reforming the public service are just taking off and hardly something to write home about.
Their impact on Malawians at the moment is minimal and no president would tout that as a success.
As for the economy, where is the evidence that things are getting better. Economists and accountants believe in figures. Can the President show Malawians the figures to show that their standards of living have improved?
Is it not actually the opposite, as Chakwera said, that tobacco farmers in Bwengu, Nambuma and Jali are feeling the pinch of the kwacha manipulation in December when they bought inputs exorbitantly as the kwacha was in free fall but now they have met a stable one when they are selling their produce?
But the President and his DPP must not be allowed to get away with murder in broad daylight.
The President deliberately ran away from hot potatoes and accounting to Malawians some of the controversial decisions his government has taken recently.
The obvious one that comes to mind is MSB. Chakwera could not have put it any better. When you borrow money from a friend, use it for your own benefit but when time comes for you to pay, you suddenly become clever, there is just one name for you: You are a congenital crook.
DPP supporters borrowed money from MSB by duress. They have not paid back that money. The bank is on the verge of collapse and needs immediate recapitalisation.
After messing it thus, the DPP administration is left with no choice but to sell it to the highest bidder and get rid of the sick baby.
But before selling, the DPP wants to cover the back of their supporters who owe the bank billions and has given MSB K6 billion of our tax to bail out these crooks when they know them and where they are.
As Chakwera said, we have sheriffs in this country who are legally empowered to confiscate property from anybody who owes somebody money and they are refusing to pay.
But in this case, these crooks are special. They have the backing of the DPP administration and then they have money to hire smart lawyers in town to protect them.
All this has one name and it is abuse of power that Malawians gave DPP last year. The tax they are using to bail out their crooked friends who borrowed from MSB is paid by you and me.
Nowhere did we say they should use it in this manner but for our welfare. Paying bank loans for crooks is not our welfare.
This is pure thuggery and murder, the ultimate crime, and the DPP must not be allowed to get away with it.
Malawians are watching and looking up to Parliament and Chakwera started well but the job must be finished.
*The article appeared in the Malawi News under ‘Hititng the Nail’columnFollow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :