United Democratic Front (UDF) presidential candidate Atupele Muluzi on Sunday launched his party’s election plans for 2019 at Civo Stadium in Lilongwe, saying the May 21 2019 Tripartite Elections are part of the significant transition to transform Malawi.
Atupele, 40, the youngest among the eight presidential candidates, was accompanied by his running mate Frank Tumpale Mwenifumbo, at the colourful launch, promising to run a national and well-oiled campaign.
He said the elections in May provide the country an opportunity to drive, deepen and embed inclusive reforms and transformation across the country.
In his speech, the UDF presidential hopeful said time has come to shift the national mindset from rhetoric to action, saying his party will achieve a consistent development program growth rate of six percent and above in older to foster meaningful development and reduce poverty.
“I am committed to demonstrating leadership by action not rhetoric,” he said.
Said the UDF leader: “We must manage our domestic debt and implement responsible fiscal and monetary policies to maximise the value of our national budget and public resources. Every Kwacha must count.”
He added that his party will establish a cost savings and waste reduction committee, comprising public servants, labour unions and private sectors among others to reduce indirect costs to government with 20 percent.
Atupele, therefore, said his government will adopt new measures to improve the level of investment into social and infrastructure development and provide the means for reducing disproportionate debt stock accumulated by the outgoing regimes.
“We will pursue policies that will lead to a further reduction of interest rates to avoid crowing out the private sector while managing inflation,” said Muluzi.
He pointed out that UDF will broaden tax base by expanding catchment area and number of tax payers and ensuring that all individuals and businesses eligible to pay taxes become compliant and meet their tax obligations.
“We will increase the lowest tax threshold to K100, 000 and raise the minimum wage to K2, 000 per day,” he assured.
Atupele said his administration will tackle corruption “at the source” by strengthening public financial management, procurement, auditing systems to ensure public resources are used for their intended purpose.
He also said UDF will ensure that will resource accountability institutions so that they can constrain abuse of power and are used by Malawians to hold leaders to account.
“And everyone will need to play a central role in this effort. For us, as the UDF, this strongly aligns with our values of democracy, development, peace and unity. Unity is the underlying ideal from which everything else is then built,” he said.
Atupele said he will ensure that every voice is heard through feedback mechanism.
“We will only be able to deliver the change and transformation we want if all Malawian voices are heard and listened to. Inclusion is at the heart of any real and sustainable development,” he said.
Atupele said the UDF will stay on course with the two key pillars of inclusive growth and good governance.
“We have the right leadership: that understands its responsibility, is accountable and will continue to embody values of transparency in how it governs,” he stressed.
“Atupele urged the electorate to elect UDF presidential candidate, members of parliament and ward councillors, saying: “A vote for UDF is a vote for a new way, a vote for a new beginning.”
In his remarks, the Party’s Secretary General, Kandi Padambo concurred with Muluzi saying they will pursue deeper integration in SADC and COMESA Economic Unions and ensure more effective participation in international markets to seize on emerging trade and economic development opportunities.
“We will pursue smart partnership with other regional and global interest groups and investors,” Padambo added.
In the manifesto, UDF is pledging to encourage the private sector partners to develop small and medium scale enterprises in a range of growth sectors and improve the country’s critical infrastructure of transport, power, water and irrigation and telecommunications.
It also pledges to help young people develop the right skills to take up employment or business opportunities across the key growth sectors.
Further, UDF pledges to develop a social protection system that cares for the most vulnerable and cushioning them from the impact of economic reforms and guarantee them equal access to high quality basic services such as education, health and jobs.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :