Atupele Muluzi too young for presidency

I am a proponent of leadership renewal. Some young and fresh ideas will go a long way in solving the myriad problems inflicting Malawi today. I however do not buy into this idea of thrusting a 33 or even 35 year into an elective office like the presidency.

I am not Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) nor People’s Party (PP) neither am l United Democratic Front (UDF). I am not even Malawi Congress Party (MCP) or AFORD. I am just a concerned Malawian with long lost political interest but worried with our ever changing political landscape.

Firstly, l do appreciate my contribution may touch a lot of raw nerves but equally so it is my right that my views are aired on Nyasa Timesas much as l shall respect readers rights to critique my viewpoint. Such is the nature of democracy and in particular the need to frankly exchange ideas and exercise brain power in total civility.

Atupele Muluzi: 33-years-old

I agree 100% on the need to recognise and promote young talent. We however should be wary that with age comes responsibility, values and of course wisdom which may lack in a 33 or 35 year old. In living and growing there are inherent life skills that go with it. It is not just about the physical and intellectual development.

At the tender age of 33 or 35, youths can endeavor for other meritorious office such as business, sports, entertainment, academics or entry level politics while they grow, learn and mature. The sky is the limit. The Presidency, however is a totally different ball game.

Malawi for instance has far complex development challenges which cannot be entrusted to a 33 or 35 year old no matter the desperation. The office of the presidency requires mature, seasoned sober minds osati makhanda azaka 33 kapena 35.

It makes interesting reading to learn that our Atupele Austin Muluzi will have a go for it. Akuti agenda for change, zabwino zonse ndithu. Not so different from James Mbowe Nyondo our 2009 independent presidential candidate.

With all due respect the junior Muluzi can be safely said to be in the formative years of his life both physically and politically. Besides being an honourable Member of Parliament, the boy is in need of some vital life experiences necessary to direct the path his life will take. I do respect his decisions and choices he is quite entitled to them. I however have some serious reservations that young as he can be entrusted with the mandate to run the affairs of Malawi as a President.

Presidency requires unbridled wisdom, intelligence, stature necessary for one to be a statesman and make decisions for over 14 million subjects and generations to come. Atupele is only a lawyer and parliamentarian who walked from Saint Andrews to England and into parliament representing an ostensibly rural under developed Machinga North East constituency. He holds little attributes for the presidency besides his age.

Atupele is educated, well and good but paper certificates and realism are two distinct worlds apart. A living example is the incumbent Bingu wa Mutharika well read Doctor of economics but totally incompetent and arrogant fella who has single handedly destroyed our nationhood.

 

Atupele has never been in cabinet except for some obscure membership of some parliamentary committee. He does not hold any working experience not even at corporate level and yet he thinks he can gun for the Presidency. He has no experience and wisdom for effective political or national leadership except his parliamentary responsibilities.

It thus makes it absurd that a person of tender age, questionable political credentials and poor experience can harbor ambitions for the highest office in the land. It will be asinine that Malawians allow him to play with their lives simple because they detaste the incumbent.

Atupele needs to grow and form ideas before he is thrust on the high pedestal. The presidency should be an exclusive province for the tried, tested, wisened greybeards not youngsters like him. It is sickening that a youngster like him is thrown into the deep end of Malawian politics.

It will be disastrous for the well being of our nation if wealthy patriarchs were to use their resources to spur young, ineffective youngsters into offices of national importance like the presidency. These people should allow Atupele to grow, get some experience and wisdom first before they can think of pushing him into the higher office. His time is yet to come the boy is still young.

This business of plucking people from the streets into political offices like the presidency is retrogressive for our country which is why today we are inundated with incompetent arrogant political leadership to the detriment of our nationhood and development simply because we made wrong choices.

What Malawi needs maybe is a laddered system of political career development with proven track record for all presidential aspirants. Let them be involved in grassroot politics or university or college activism, let them have worked as permanent secretaries in government or in equally senior capacities in the private sector, let them be voted into parliament, chair some parliamentary committees, let them be appointed junior ministers to full cabinet ministers to prime ministers, vice president and then president.

In addition to the above, and in the interest of nationhood, government should introduce a Presidential Age Bill to set strict age and criterion for aspiring Presidents. The minimum age can be put at 45 or 50 years, with a maximum of 60, minimum of first degree, some political and working experience.

Unprepared, incompetent, overzealous opportunists need to grow up first, get the experience both political and working and then their time can come. Osangodzuka mublengeti mphuno bii ukuti ndikhala President, ayi ndithu zimenezo zithe.

This way our Malawi will have tested leaders with optimal leadership and judgement.

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