Mutharika says Kwacha depreciating to ‘its normal level’: Refutes Africa Review report on his pay

President Peter Mutharika has commented on the free fall of the country’s currency, the Kwacha, saying it was over-priced and it is currently depreciating to its true value.

Mutharika: Malawi Kwacha was over-priced

Mutharika: Malawi Kwacha was over-priced

Mutharika said in an interview with the Voice of America (VOA) that the kwacha is further weakened by a weak export base.

“Part of the problem is a weak export base and the other currencies are strong, and in a way I think the kwacha over appreciated anyway, so it is probably depreciating to its normal level,” VOA quoted Mutharika as saying.

“But in the long term, I would like us to increase our exports and cut back on spending, and I hope that we would be able to get back to where we should be,” said Mutharika.

Malawi is currently experiencing bad economic environment characterised by high inflation rate at 23 percent as of August 2015, according to National Statistical Office (NSO), high interest rates in commercial banks, hovering around 37 percent as well as a downgraded gross domestic product (GDP) growth rate of three percent this year from an earlier projection of 5.5 percent.

A fortnight ago, an International Monetary Fund (IMF) mission to Malawi declared the country’s three-year Extended Credit Facility (ECF) off-track due to fiscal slippages equivalent to about two percent of GDP, which emerged during the second half of 2014/15 financial year, in part because of overspending on the wage bill.

But Mutharika said his government is working on modalities to bring the economy back on track and   outlined some of the measures his government is taking such as restricting local and international travel for all government officials; the measure which he said will save the government about $20 million.

President Mutharika also refuted a report by the African Review, a publication based in Kenya, which named him among the top 10 African presidents with high salary compared to the gross domestic product (GDP) of their countries.

“My salary is 1.5 million kwacha [per month] and is even less than most of the civil servants.  It is certainly less than the governor of the central bank and the CEO of the Malawi Revenue Authority.  It is not that much, I think … it comes to about $3 000 [per month] at the current exchange rate,” said Mutharika.

“We are not taking the [increased] money, both me and the vice president and Cabinet ministers.  We are saying we are not going to take the salary until the economy improves. “

Mutharika also expressed optimism that the Public Service Reforms which government is implementing will help weed out corruption by ensuring accountability and preventing financial malfeasance in the country.

The Malawi leader said his stance is zero tolerance for corruption, adding that he wants to restore a culture of accountability.

Donor support, which accounts for nearly 40 percent of the country’s budget, has been withdrawn after officials were accused of stealing millions of dollars in public funds.

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nick
Guest

Anyone who believes in a “normal level” for the value of the kwacha is not living in the real world

MaKopa
Guest

Shaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa clueless man bla bla bla crazy indeed.

Backilie "Nsalu ya Makatani" Buluzi
Guest
His salary could be K1.5 million but does he use that. How many benefits does he enjoy including stealing or taking bribes? How much do Malawians lose when he travels by road? There is more to this than meets the eye. We should not be fooled. He can’t talk about the salaries of civil servants who have to pay for almost everything. The schools are expensive since most of us have to send our children to private schools. The standards in public schools are are pathetic. The standards in public hospitals are pathetic though Bingu was taken to Kamuzu Central… Read more »
Jarsn Phiko
Guest
There was no truth in what APM said. In fact he talked trash completely. Why did he defend his team and not produce the list of those that went. He mentioned a few names who were funded by ther organisation and not his team, why? You think we are children? Mr Muthalika, you are using people to prepare your allowances for your trips , dont you think the same can leak such information? Why fight Zodiak for telling the researched truth to the Nation and you think Malawians are such foolish to believe you? What did the your political dogs… Read more »
mtate mike rsa
Guest

Chitsilu cha president ndimuthalika ntchito zamanjaake zikumuchila umboni

ambusye
Guest

Am watching and am listening. 2019 we will take all the rubbish away!!!

Ntchisi boy
Guest

Beloved Malawians let us learn to argue with objectivity and soberness. I don’t think calling sate president an idiot is proper way to prove a point.

mphatso
Guest

A Malawi tulo.muli busy kutukwana president kuiwala kuti dziko amaononga ndi a IMF.read what they are saying kuti dziko liri mmavuto chifukwa cha high wage bill.what it means is that anthu achotsedwe ntchito,then ayambe kuvutika then ayambe kulira ndikudandaula then aukire boma then iwo ayambe kupereka ngongole kuti aoneke ngati akuthandizapo a satana eni eni.onani zomwe adapanga ku zimbabwe anthu oyipa lero akuti akugwiritsa us dollar.where did they make that agreement anthu a satanic.open your eyes you will see

Peter Mathanyula
Guest

Which grade of civil service receives more than MK 1.5m? and yet he himself said can not get rich in govt because there’s no money in gvt. Who do you think you’re cheating??? We’ll see in 2019 if you happen to reach that year.

MSANA WA PETURO
Guest

Dog, dog, dog and more dogs! Who in his or her right senses can listen to this rubbish from the chief idiot of Malawi?

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