Malawi President needs genuine advisers and not hero-worshippers

It is obvious that most countries which are unsuccessful have governments which rely on fire-fighting methods of solving problems and challenges. In this case, the government is reactive—it waits for a problem to happen and then try to look for solutions, instead of having strategies in place to prevent problems from happening. This, unfortunately, is the way things are in Malawi at the moment.

Mutharika and his cabinet

Mutharika and his cabinet

Time and again, in defence of economic problems in Malawi, the ruling authorities are fond of saying the challenges Malawi is facing are not unique to Malawi. It is doubtful if any sensible person can be pacified with such a statement. In fact, it does not necessarily mean that it is alright to face problems so long other countries do the same. Our government should know that the one–size–fits–all policy must not apply to challenges. Problems need to be prevented or solved as soon as possible. Nursing them just because neighbouring countries tolerate them can be retrogressive.

What is stated above is similar to what President Peter Mutharika said at the press conference in defence of the bloated delegation that some heads of State went to the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) with a much bigger delegation than Malawi’s. But the question is: Do those heads of State come from countries as poor as Malawi? The answer is, obviously no.

The concern by most Malawians is the huge amount of money spent on the big delegation. This is why some quarters are interested in knowing list of delegates, and reasons for being part of the delegation to New York. Meanwhile, the argument that people such as Vice-Chancellors of public universities were privately funded by their institutions does not hold water. Such funding cannot be private because public universities such as Mzuzu University (Mzuni) and University of Malawi (Unima) are funded by taxpayers’ money.

At the moment, it can be said that the UNGA controversy plus the angry reaction by the President at the press conference raise some questions about his advisers. As it were, the President has more than enough advisers to help him. Apart from countless advisers on various subjects, he has a 20-member Cabinet. These ministers are supposed to be well-informed to give timely advice to the President.

With all due respect, Cabinet ministers could have foreseen that poverty-stricken Malawians will not be amused to see their tax money being recklessly spent. Therefore, they could have advised the President accordingly, to avoid him getting heated under the collar after being queried. In fact, if the ministers are hired on merit, it means they have special qualifications and qualities to enable them to advise the President.

It is very surprising that even with looming hunger, no medicines in hospitals, joblessness and many other problems, no adviser or Cabinet minister raised an alarm about the bloated delegations to UNGA! It is strange that no government official saw anything wrong with it. Unfortunately, the advisory role of ministers seems to be masked in fear. Instead of advising the President they opt to defend him by ridiculing those who query him, especially on national issues.

It goes without saying that for this country to progress, the President needs genuine advisers and not hero-worshippers who would see nothing wrong even when the government is obviously failing. It is wrong to assume that the President has a magic wand and that single-handedly, he can propel this country forward.

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GETRUDE
Guest

MALAWI AMOTO

mulamu pelekani@gmail.com
Guest
A normal leader who loves his country take a look in any protocol and he/she has to make a good decision. Malawi is going under worste econmoy ever. He Mr Peter Muntharika want to be suceeded his chance lies in economy. With donors withdrawn he has one chance to cut expeditures. The most costing in Malawi is travelling +allowances of president and government officials. Costing of accommodation abroad. If you add all the costs of government officials the money spend on all these can build government clincs and schools. What I have seen in Malawi we realy on aid (donors)… Read more »
KAMBWE
Guest

ESPECIALLY THE DUNDERGHEAD BAMUSI…

hisbolla
Guest

U have reminded me about amatchalichi. Anglican n ccap bt synod. Sinking vry low. Kuchita kuoneka kuti awa adya zaweni awa, a bishop, chitani manyazi, talk about real issues not wot u did last weekend.

Charombanthu
Guest
Emily, as the leader of this nation, the president has to take responsibility for his decisions. Advisors are there just to guide him most especially on areas or the tuff he is not very familiar with. For instance, we all know that our president is a lawyer by profession and therefore any decisions that affect issues like health, security or finances have to be referred to his respective advisors/gurus, where necessary, before he can decide and he has to stand bold on issues affecting areas he is very familiar with and decide on his own. But at the end of… Read more »
Mphwache
Guest

Reminds me of President Museveni who has 100 advisors, some of whom have never even met the President and most of the time, it is him who advises them.

Concerned citizen
Guest

I was listening to a program yesterday on a radio station where Mozambicans are coming to Malawi for free medical care because they have to pay for medical care back home. It was pointed out that this was the same with Zambians and Tanzanians. Now if we want to compare countries, then let us start here. How do you expect our taxes to pay for all the free services we offer?

The Mozambican lady talked of paying 2,000 to give birth. Some how we feel we will be able to balance pur budget. HOW?

dpp kanundu
Guest
I have always had the same question that why does government always defend wrong doings by justifying that other countries are also doing it or they did it? Recently the president said Malawi delegation to UNGA was the smallest, 115 people. Let’s face it if china had 200, USA 150, UK 150, RSA 150, Botswana 150. In this scenario any sane person can not use these numbers as justification. Obviously the economies and poverty levels of these countries way better off than ours. So I found it wanting comparing sizes of delegations from other countries vs ours to UNGA. They… Read more »
APM's advisor on gondolosi and nsatsi
Guest

Chani,mai Mkamanga mukudana ndi ife? Musaiwale a APM tinawathandiza kunamiza anthu ndie sangatitaye. Ndipo tinayenela kukhala nduna .

Sapitwa
Guest
Emily, I beg to differ from your views on Advisors and Qualifications of Ministers. What ever happens, the buck stops on no. 1 and he should take responsibility. Whether he banged tables like Hillary Clinton on Bhengazi or boasted about his riches is also irrelevant. The buck stops on him! Whether he can try to call the Religous Leaders or group of NGO,s what ever; the buck stops on him! He must be bold enough to disqualify irrelevant advices and make his own decisions to the best economic interst of the country. The point is: he must never allow unnecessary… Read more »
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