Mixed views on splashing K300m for Malawi 51st Independence celebrations

There has been mixed reactions to this year’s Independence Day, with analysts and social commentators giving different views on K300 million budget for independence celebrations scheduled to take place at the Kamuzu Stadium in Blantyre on 6 July 2015.

President Mutharika, vice president Saulos Chilima and their spouses

President Mutharika, vice president Saulos Chilima and their spouses

Most people interviewed by Nyasa Times and also those commenting on Capital FM radio’s Newstalk phone-in programme on Monday June 29, 2015 expressed reservations, saying Malawians – half of whom live below the poverty line – cannot be expected to celebrate independence when they lack access to resources .

While others supported the move to splash millions in marking the day as an important to r celebrate independence from Britain.

Those against the celebrations argued that independence is meaningless when lives of ordinary Malawians have not improved and the nation remains one of the impoverished in the world.

“Corruption and breakdown of basic services such as water, electricity, food and medication make a mockery of our independence because this is what the struggle was all about,” pointed out 63-year-old Martin Mauka.

Mauka said while he was proud that Malawi is an independent nation, it must be reflecting the freedom through the bottom line accrued benefits of jobs, lack of poverty, access to affordable health, the elderly being paid for their years of hard work and putting priorities accordingly, investing in science and new technologies for efficiency in solutions to the nation.

Many others said majority of Malawians still hope for a real encounter with honey and milk to appreciate independence.

A 25-year-old Agnes Kasi said independence had not brought prosperity for most Malawians.

“Why should we celebrate 50 years of independence if the majority of us are still poor and barely survive?” she said.

“It’s meaningless to celebrate when all we need are jobs and economic empowerment. This country needs leaders who can develop it to end this poverty,” Kasi added.

Malawians said chronic underdevelopment and heavy reliance on foreign aid had locked them into a new form of economic bondage.

Successive leaders, including independence hero Kamuzu Banda who ruled for three decades before losing the first democratic poll in 1994, have failed to grow the agriculture-based economy.

Chair for the main organising committee for this year’s Independence Celebrations, Finance Minister Goodall Gondwe said government has allocated K300 million for independence day “because we would like to cater for various necessities as a number of people will be travelling from Lilongwe to Blantyre to attend the activity.”

He further added that this year’s event will be commemorated under the theme ‘Towards Economic Transformation in Malawi for Inclusive Development’.
According to Gondwe, the theme has been chosen to reflect on the need to involve everyone in every activity happening in the country to change Malawi’s economic situation.

He then expressed optimism that through the theme, Malawi, at 51, is likely to economically transform in all aspects of development.

Gondwe added that currently all the preparations regarding the event are at an advanced stage and that the country is expected to host foreign dignitaries.

“We are expecting to have foreign delegates, although it is too soon to indicate where the delegate will come from,” said Gondwe.

Malawi celebrates Independence Day on July 6 every year and the event is normally spiced up by various activities which include military displays.

The landlocked southern African nation of 15 million people, whose economy is largely based on agriculture, relied on international aid for 40 percent of its budget before the donor freeze following cashgate corruption scandal dating back from 2005.

President Peter Mutharika — whose brother and former president Bingu wa Mutharika died in office in 2012 — has pledged to reach beyond traditional Western donors to find “new friends” in China and Russia.

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60 thoughts on “Mixed views on splashing K300m for Malawi 51st Independence celebrations”

  1. kavwiza says:

    Sasangalala kapena kukondwera pamene munthu wuli mumabvuto. A Malawi akubvutika kunjaku ma ambulance sakuyenda kamba ka mafuta pomwe in muli busy kukonzekera chitsangalaro what a fool

  2. Wachikond says:

    In my house we were counted 5 last census then it means give me my 100 thousand nkagule matumba 10 achimanga ndisunge zozakhala pa mzere kudikila 10kg ndiukapolo womwe kuphwandoko am not going

  3. MAMA says:

    Pofunika a mcp ndi pp ndi wena nonse okufuna kwa bwino musazapitek

    MULUNGU Ngwa bwino

    Musa

  4. That’s too little ,vuto ndi kwacha ilibe mphavu imeneyo ma rand ndi 7.5million and u are lamenting, eeeee mavuto bwanji.

  5. Novirikana says:

    Masavage ambiri akuganiza kuti 300mita ndiyambiri. Akuyesa ndiyokonzekera ukwati osati national event. Koma abale sukulu ndiyofunika zedi.

  6. Says the truth to shame Devil says:

    Kasi apa mbwenu titenge vyalo vya kuwalo vitovwirenge nthena? Apa pakuyana waka ngati dada mulowevu uyo wakuwika kumwera phere ndalama panthazi kuluska kugulira wana chakulya pa nyumba. Kasi ka 300m tingagulako yayi ngoma kuti kuno ku mizi tisangeko chakulya? kweni wakuneneska kuti nyengo zinyake wanthu wanyake sukulu yikuwawowvira yayi. Nadi apa boma mbwenu lingaghanaghana yayi kuti malingana na masuzgo agho tili nagho tileke danga vya vikondwerero. Mbaya Mwe! Mama Malawi kulongozgeka na wanthu wambula mitu.

  7. Namaloko says:

    Lets divide K300,000,000 by 15,000,000 people. Each person will get K20. What are
    we going to buy with the K20? May be jiggs. Let us use the money for celebrations becoz every Malawian will be invited to attend and watch free football match that does not worth K20. Billy Mayaya can you petition the govt. to increase the allocation. K20 is just too low.

    1. Jokujoku says:

      Then devide 300 000 000 by 8000 000 it will be 37 .5 which can build 37+ school blocks..what about that

  8. Chimani. Game says:

    Remember Joyce Banda.this idiot of a president called peter doesn’t know what he is doing.very greedy and proud

  9. zibwente says:

    300 million is not enough for national celebrations. Zimafunika kuzipepesako nthawi ina. Kodi bwanji a Malawi kudandaula. Ndalama izi ndichimozimozi ndizomwe Beckham anaononga pa birthday pa mwana wake pamene if its the nation of 15 million people.

  10. mavuto says:

    Please use the money to buy maize for the hungry people who were affected by the heavy rains. People will love you and respect you for that.

  11. Puludzu says:

    Abale tiyeni tizichita manyazi tikamapanga zinthu, zoona tingamapange plan ma celebrations a independence with such a huge budget while an average Malawian in perishing in chronic poverty. Secondly, kodi ndalama zonsezi zichokera kuti ngati boma likulepera kulipira ma civil servants ma salary awo a June? I feel sorry for my country I don’t know kuti likupita kuti. May God bless Malawi kuti mwina zinthu zisinthe padakali pano sizilibwino. 6th July is just 5 days away from today when I have not yet accessed my salary for June, so ridiculous.

  12. losco says:

    Jodi munthu ukakhala wosauka sumakondwapo nthawi zina?Go ahead our government with celebration plans which is very historical. Zamalazamala ndalama!!!!

  13. mangochi Kabwafu says:

    Are you independent? Still relying on the same colonial masters. Zopusa basi.

  14. Mugonapamuhanya says:

    MK300m is not enough for national celebrations. A country that does not value its sovereignty does not celebrate its independence because people have slave mentality. Such a country does not qualify for prosperity.

  15. hk says:

    Mazira yako peter,how do you spend 300 mil for a day’s function? I also believe that amount is only symbolic of the huge amount you are going to spend. We know dpp very well and after the so called cerebrations peter and Goodall gondwe will have to share some cash. Malawi is in shit we can’t wait for 2019 to send this dpp team to hell.

  16. Temson Chinjala says:

    Independence mean four things social,economic,cultural and political. In a country where economy is in the hands of foreigners,what do we mean by independence .Why should few deceive the majority that they are free when the people are slaves.
    GIVE ME YOUR EMAIL PLEASE

  17. Vuto la matchona saganizira munthu yemwe wasunga dzikoli iwo atathawa umamphawi. Panopa anabwera m’dzina la demokilase kuzakolola.

  18. malawian says:

    Only shall thinking malawians will cerebrate this day using huge sums of govt money which could have been put to better use like buying drugs in these govt hospitals, pay civil servants, buy hospital equipment, or build one or more school blocks. Shallow and non patriotic think would justify this useless thinking

  19. Khwinda says:

    Tizamatche pa 6 july ngati dollar sibwera mmalo mopanga celebrate

  20. Jimmy Martson Tomoka says:

    This is total madness! How do they expect Malawians to believe that the govt has no money to pay civil servants, pay local councils,etc if they are spending huge sums on celebrations!

  21. Zanga Phee! says:

    Sometimes i ask myself do these leaders have passion heart? at any cost you don’t need to be told in which situation we are.When shall we have a proper administration with great thinkers .See my name.

  22. Wa ku Mchinji says says:

    Goodall Gondwe is a spent force. NKHALAMBA kapumeni. Saulos Chilima, I pity, is on the wrong boat.

  23. Angoni Apaphata Ife says:

    I do not have a problem with the amount. I have a problem with the organisers. If they can raise 2 billion for the presidents wedding what is 300million? Uzi ndiye tipange ndife?

  24. Mwendanato says:

    why not spend this money to construct at least one school block in the districts still having shack school blocks . chonde a president or buy zipangizo for needy students with learning impairements. Mr. President please dismiss the deputy minister of education who went to Japan and bought ma walkman instead of hearing aids for deaf students in secondary schools, these things will backfire on you come 2019

  25. cival servant says:

    Bwanji ndalamazo mutilipire ife …..mpaka lero salary ya june sitinalandire is independence celebrations more important than the lives of people? In hospitals mulibe mankhwala…..please gvt minimise the cost for celebrations and attend to some critical issues that poor malawians are facing. Sizingathe zose nthawi imodzi komano kuchepetsako mavutowo

  26. Malawi says:

    Considering the current situation in Malawi, splashing 300 Million is total insanity. Where is the wisdom here. As of now, Malawi is poor and we need to wait for true independence without poverty, poor infrastructures, clean water, excess food, well equipped hospitals good schools etc. That 300M will be well spent buying maize for a few months than wasting it just for 1 day. Ofcourse we appreciate the 7July but this is not the time to be splashing money like that and at the same time pleading with the donors. Please for once listen and prioritise needs.

  27. Achimidzimidzi says:

    Go ahead, spend all the Mk300m if it is meant for independence celebrations. Atleast we remind our colonial masters that they no longer rule us and we remind ourselves that we are a soveriegn state. Therefore any problems that come are for our own to solve.

    But mark my words, the national address and the speeches at Kamuzu Stadium will be the same triviality.eg lets work together,we are serious to develop this country,no corruption in my government,reducing inflation and interest rates, investment destination etc,etc.

    This is a national event,therefore we should all put on our party colors/uniforms and not only one party.

    Actually this year, I am responsible for all invitations. Give me the following invitation cards, I will deliver them by hand before its too late:
    1.Joyce Banda
    2 Bakili Muluzi
    3.Dr.Chakwera
    4.Lucius Banda.

  28. U hv to spend that K300m after civil servants r pd or else do not.

  29. OMalindi says:

    Malawi Ndi Osauka Basi Umphawi Ulipo Ndipo Uzakhalapo

  30. John says:

    THIS GOVT IS NOT SERIOUS. DELAYING WORKERS SALARIES SIMPLY BECAUSE YOU WANT TO SAVE MONEY TO HOLD AN INDEPENDENCE CELEBRATION? MINISTRIES HAVE ALSO NOT BEEN FUNDED THIS MONTH DUE TO SAME PROBLEM. THE RELEASAL OF CHEQUES AT ACCOUNTANT GENERAL HAS ALSO BEEN PUT ON HOLD BECAUSE MONEY IS BEING CHANNELED TO CELEBRATIONS. WATER AND ELECTRICITY ARE BEING DISCONNECTED BECAUSE DEPARTMENTS CAN NOT ACCESS THE CHEQUES. REASON, ,,,,CELEBRATIONS. OOOOH! MY GOD!

  31. Jokeje says:

    Malawi a failed state.

  32. Walusungu kalua says:

    I think the Government has made the wrong choice for not funding Hospitals so that they can celebrate on the Independence day. I found it had to take why should we celebrate when people suffering at hospital can’t the Minister think to reduce the budget and allocate at least to the district hospitals. Shame Government .

  33. The real Ujeni says:

    The allocation I like that because people will travel from Lilongwe to Blantyre? No one will travel from Mzuzu, is that so. If indeed Lilongwe is capital and centrally located is it not justifiable and sensible to have the celebrations in the Capital. If you’re from Blantyre or Mzuzu and you fail to travel that should not be govt concern.

  34. OBSERVER says:

    THIS IS TAKING MALAWIANS FOR RIDE. RIGHT NOW NO FUNDING TO GOVT DEPARTMENTS – HOSPITALS LAST MAY RECEIVED K3M OR LESS MUCH THAT NO THERE IS FOOD RATIONING, NO PATIENT REFERRALS, NO SALARIES FOR WORKS & YOU SPEND MK300M? SURELY YOU WILL NOT SURVIVE

  35. agnes wanzeru says:

    Nanga maphwando tikadyera kuti?

  36. moya says:

    Are we really independent? Why are still are talking about donor aid money still? Wjich voice do our politicians listens to most? Malawians or the west? Who controls our economy? Cashgate audits id it local or foreign companies auditing? Ask irself these questions then u will realize spending k300,000,000 thinking we are independent is pure a joke. Why do u think mugabe is in black books with the west? Bcoz he is seeking real independence thus way ahead of the times

  37. VIYAZI TEMBO says:

    300 MILLION? HOW CAN ONE CELEBRATE WITH EMPTY STOMACH? SHAME ON MALAWI LEADERS.

  38. khumbila says:

    This amount could have paid some civil servants who up to this day have not received their June salaries. Shame.

  39. poooooo says:

    300 Million yachepaso, pali zambili ka. Foreigh President is comming with his delligation, Foreigh football team, allowances for our sportsmen on the day, allowances for other participants, fuel, and so on, so u can see kut yachepaso kwambiri.

  40. zonse ndi nthawi says:

    Zaka 51 tikukondwelera katangale,kuba,andale odzikonda,umphawi,

  41. JOHN LESTER MACHESO says:

    Are those against the idea ready to tell those that never experienced the woes of being a colony to Britain;that Malawi is not independent to some extent?Yes;we are not there;when it comes to the understanding of INDEPENDENCE;in its totality but is there anything wrong in keeping our History burning-do such thinkings require a special Lecture theatre inorder to appreciate that it is only when History is embraced and understood by the Nationals that that Nation can easily change its History and take new direction and expect new and better destinies.WE CAN ONLY CHANGE OUR ECONOMIC DESTINY IF WE A VOID THROWING AWAY OUR HISTORY BECAUSE OF WHAT WE ARE.

  42. Akatswiri says:

    Shaa k300 Million

  43. bwampini nyapapi says:

    Civil servants haven’t been paid June Salaries up to now. Government departments received no funding for operations in June. Hunger is looming following flush floods that devastated most parts of the country. Medicines and other social needs are not being provided and yet our leaders have an appetite to blow MK300 Million for celebrations . Hopeless Goodall Gondwe and yousr fellow puppets please cancel these celebrations. We can do better just with National Day of Prayers.

  44. chingwechambuzi says:

    its meangless to celebrate when the country is not moving forward..shame

  45. Kadakwiza says:

    51 years of independent is meaningless. We are still the poorest in world. Nothing to celebrate.

  46. MACHE says:

    zats bad,greedy politicians

  47. Nyau Isthobwa says:

    Ibani zimenezo as far as the budget has passed

  48. Patrick says:

    Olo anthu atawona Peter akudya nsima there will be mixed reactions. Ena mumva ‘the whole president kudya nsima? Osadya mpunga ofewa bwanji?’ Ndiye mmalawiyo ameneyo

  49. mani says:

    Just why is Peter Mutharika obsessed with partying? over and above these so called celebrations he has budgeted for 500 million banquet halls, for what?

  50. mpha says:

    Koma dziko lero liri mmanja mwa agalu bwwnji!! Mk300m for what? alot of malawians are suffering, mmidzimu mulibe madzi aukhondo, malo ogona osakhala bwino, alibe zipatala and even you know there is shortage of drugs in most of the hospitals. This year the rain was not good predicting hunger to 3 quarters of Malawians. Kukula mutu sikudziwa kuganiza kapena kuphunzira kwambiri sindiye kut you know everything. Please be sensible. To hell with your budget. Jus a day 300m will be gone? mwatijayiratu tsopano

  51. Professor Seyani says:

    What do you except from clueless PRESIDENT AND HIS GOVERNMENT

  52. bwangazi says:

    Enjoying 51 years of poverty and foolishnes in malawi by malawians!!! Pa thako panu nonse a malawi including your leaders!!!!

  53. Joseph says:

    Such a shame. I wonder why you need to celebrate freedom from Britain, who are the same people supporting your aid-free budgets at the moment while the DPPs/Muntharikas, the main people who we should be celebrating freedom FROM are mongering around the streets with big tummies, abusing anything and everything they lay their hands on and producing all sorts of cashgates that never existed before. Tell me, where is the freedom? There is no economic freedom in Malawi, no security, no food, no job creations,,,,,, the list is endless. Its just talk talk talk from the fat cats! What a shame.

  54. To say that the first leader failed is trash. Kamuzu did what he could remember he started from scratch to where it was. The economy was simply the best but now bwa. Amalawi tamayamikani zina.

  55. Ismail Adams says:

    Amenewo nde ndi manyi, cerebrating what! How dare are you dont you feel shame of youselves a bunch of fools ? Go n cerebrate (party) while the ordinary citizen are in a poverty those flood victims and manymore sleeping without food.

  56. Mwafulirwa says:

    For the past 50years we have been cerebrating national independence. Did we cerebrate because we were rich? When did we become poor as a national? Or should we not cerebrate because it’s not joyisi, Khumbo, and Enock Chihana but Peter and Saulos on the driving seat? What stupid argument is this? Not surprised though. These comments come from the dumbest party in the world – pp.

  57. skeptical malawian says:

    There is nothing to celebrate.That 300 million can be used for better things than ferrying some handclappers from different parts of Malawi to Bt.For 51 years there is nothing to show that Malawian can celebrate for.Its the same poverty and probably now Malawians are more poorer than 30 yrs ago.Its 51 years of poverty and no solution to uplift the lives of ordinary Malawians who cannot afford a decent meal and other basic things.You can live that to Pitala and Saulos because they have acquired new steps of dancing with their wives in a showy manner.

  58. Peter Benga says:

    Can the government come clear as to why Mzuzu has been sidelined to host the celebrations? Mzuzu last hosted in 2008.Are the celebrations only for the people in south and centre? Is this not segregation what the government is doing?

  59. Hello! says:

    Spending K300million for a one day activity sounds ridiculous and extravagant for a nation where the majority of people are living on less than K450 a day and where these has been a massive drought and property damage due to floods. The Finance Minster said that most of the money allocated in the 2015/16 budget is just on paper. Are we serious that we can afford to spend that hefty amount on independence celebrations only? May God guide our leaders and show them what it means to love their nation!!!

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