Catholic Church talks tough on cash-gate: Malawians urged to exercise ‘holy anger’

The influential Catholic Church through its watchdog Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace (CCJP) an arm of the Episcopal Conference of Malawi (ECM) has called on government to move with speed in dealing with issues that are currently affecting Malawians  especially the fight against corruption.

The call was made by at a news conference in Lilongwe where CCJP Diocesan Secretaries drawn from all the eight Catholic Dioceses in Malawi presented their stand on some of the challenges and replications that have rocked the country.

According to CCJP’s National Secretary, Chris Chisoni,the Diocesan Secretaries who had held their conference, scrutinized the impact of some of the  Social, Economic and Political issues and resolved that the Joyce Banda administration should move with speed in addressing the challenges for the welfare of the poor Malawians.

“The Church cannot just seat by and watch at some of the challenges Malawians are facing now hence the need for us to speak out with one voice over these issues,” Chisoni told reporters.

Chinoko: Holy anger
Chinoko: Holy anger
Chisoni: No selective prosecution on cash-gate
Chisoni: No selective prosecution on cash-gate

Chisoni said Malawians are looking forward to government to swiftly address the issue of cash-gate scandal which is deemed to have brought some replications like the abuse of tax payers’ money, contribute to the slow pace of development and also loss of donor confidence.

On this CCJP called on government to let all institutions mandated to deal with these issues like the Police, Anti-Corruption Bureau and the Office of the Auditor General to be independent from political manipulation.

“We want comprehensive arrests of all those involved without sparing any sacred cow. Speedy prosecution of all those involved is also what we want,” said Chisoni.

Also adding his voice was CCJP’s Diocesan Secretary for Lilongwe Archdioces, Peter Chinoko who said the Church is concerned with the donors freeze to budget support.

He said the development will compromise quality of essential public services to Malawians and the austerity measures will hit the poorest hard.

Chinoko then called on the donor community to consider rerouting the aid to other credible avenues rather than leaving poor Malawians suffer.

“We are also concerned with the issue of famine in this country as this has increased the health risks, increases absenteeism of pupils in primary schools and of course it will also affect next year’s harvest. However, we are calling on government to critically consider provision of maize to all satellite ADMARC Depots which have to be properly monitored by the Police,” said Chinoko

CCJP also demanded for a comprehensive report on the purchase of maize from the proceeds of the Presidential Jet which was sold in September this year.

Other concerned issues that the Catholic Church in Malawi raised include the Increase in price of fuel, Irregularities in the registration process by the Malawi Electoral Commission and Erratic provision of Water and electricity tariffs.

CCJP has since challenged Malawian citizens to be motivated by the “Holy Anger” to demand  better services from their government.

The Diocesan Secretaries who issued the statement included, Bruno Banda (Mangochi), Mwawi Shaba (Karonga), Lewis Msiyadungu (Chikwawa), Joseph Kampango (Blantyre),Raphael Yusuf (Zomba), Lawrence Puliti (Dedza),Anold Msimuko (Mzuzu) , Peter Chinoko (Lilongwe) and the National Secretary, Chris Chisoni.

CCJP Diocesan Secretaries drawn from all the eight Catholic Dioceses in Malawi
CCJP Diocesan Secretaries drawn from all the eight Catholic Dioceses in Malawi

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