Chakwera delivers powerful response to Mutharika’s Sona: Free MBC, Malawi Electoral Commission, chiefs, clergy

Leader of opposition Lazarus Chakwera on Monday delivered a powerful response  to that President Peter Mutharika’s State of the Nation Address (Sona) , punching holes in it, asking the Mutharika administration to stop abuse traditional leaders, the clergy and civil society leaders.

Chakwera speaking in Parliament: Let’s put national interest above personal interest

Mutharika was not in parliament on Monday afternoon when Chakwera made the response.  The President is in South Africa attending a pan African parliament business.

“I therefore stand here as one who is determined to expose and rid this nation of every attempt to exploit its resources and destroy the livelihoods of its people. Let it therefore be known at the outset that I stand here to call a spade a spade, and I shall do so without fear or favor or ill-will, not because I am bitter as some misguided persons like to allege, but because this nation’s very survival, our survival, depends on it,” said Chakwera when he addressed the National Assembly.

“ As the distinguished Hon Lucius Banda, MP, put it in one of his songs, Malawi is like a boat sailing on the lake and all of us are in it. If it sinks, we all perish,” he said.

Chakwera, who is also Malawi Congress Party (MCP) president, here at home, said the opposition would move a motion in the next meeting of parliament to free the state controlled public broadcaster, Malawi Broadcasting Corporation out of government armpits.

’’Among other things, I call for the emancipation of our traditional, civil, and religious leaders from the bond of political patronage and allow them to concentrate on their noble callings within our communities. Parading traditional, civil and religious leaders on state broadcaster (MBC) to vilify those with different opinion from that of Government should stop hence forth as it is a waste of time and taxpayer funds,”said Chakwera.

MBC reacted by taking Chakwera off the live coverage on its Radio 2 and immediately played Joseph Nkasa’s Yoswa, a single that praises and glorifies President Mutharika.

But the unmoved leader of opposition said the aim was to make MBC independent and revert to its status of a public broadcaster.

The ruling Democratic Progressive Party  (DPP) tightly controls the 50 year old tax funded broadcaster which is facing stiff competition from private indepedent radios and television stations. C

Chakwera also condemned the government for the use of traditional leaders, the clergy and civil society leaders who are paraded on MBC to attack those of critical of government including opposition leaders.

“This must stop forthwith,” said Chakwera amid applause from the opposition benches.

“This  administration can do better than this,” he said as Leader of Government Business Kondwani Nankhumwa looked on.

He described the parading of the leaders on MBC as waste of tax payer money.

Chakwera said he expect MBC to operate like Southern African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) or Botswana TV or else let MBC fund itself.

’’Our suggestion therefore is that MBC should be granted independence to operate truly like a state broadcaster just like other similar institutions in the region (e.g. the SABC, Botswana TV). Furthermore, the persecution of independent media for attempting to give Malawians the other side of story should stop since this tendency denies Malawians access to information as provided by the law,’’ said Chakwera.

Chakwera also lambasted President Mutharika for growing nepotism in governnment, substandard projects, high rise of corruption, public misinformation and political intimidation among others.

He also attacked the government for the ongoing persecution of the independent media in the country.

MCP president also advised that the government should consider employing credible people in Malawi missions abroad, especially those who do not go through the parliament public appointments interviews.

“The government should consider establishing a foreign mission recruitment policy,” he said.

He also tore apart the much touted governnment reforms, saying there is nothing the government has done.

Chakwera  accused the president of implementing the reforms through rhetoric only.

He said while Mutharika said State vice presidentSaulos Chilima was lopped in to bring in his vast private sector expierience, the vice president has not been utilised at all.

Chakwera attacked the state for selective justice, saying it is quick to arrest opposition leaders, leaving out suspects with powerful connections including former Agriculture minister George Chaponda who is free after serious corruption against him on maize purchase for Admarc.

He described the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) administration as failed government because of lack of improvement in provision of social services, electricity, water supply, health, education and that things were no better for the unemployed youth or tobacco farmers.

Meanwhile, Minister of Finance, Economic Planning and Development Goodall Gondwe is expected to present the 2017/18 budget during this sitting of Parliament.

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Titani
Guest

Onse akunena kuti Opposition leader adanena zosaveka, ndi akhungu sakuwona zomwe zikuchitika. Anthu opanda chisoni, Agantiya opusa. Agalantiya 3 v1 to 3.

Paul
Guest
Abusa mwatani kodi? Do you think being bitter will solve malawii’s problems.? I expected to here from you to say what type of development u have for malawians diffrent from thhe many miles of development APM has gone namely roads community colleges irrigation uniting malawians reforms in government… Etc. Dont think that kutukwana or being tough to government will help you and later on malawians. Pliz show us your good side as a man of God. And also say why your party is being devided while you stand and watch. A poor carpenter always blame theis own tools its true… Read more »
eddie
Guest

A chakwera mukuyankhula ngati amzeru yet mkangano mu nyumba mwanu uli thooo. watsala iwe uzisowetse because eni ake achipani ulicho sakukufuna. You have sat on the ticking bomb soon or later you will be impeached believe you me! Responce yanji yosapanga acknoweledge MA POSITIVE amzako. udzafera ku bench yomweyo, ask Tembo, late Gwanda……………………. The bottom line ukudziwa kuti PITALA ndi katundu omanga ndi mawaya if you think am jocking ask Abiti Mtila. she was booted out ali driver wa dziko. Wina ndiye udziti fweeeeee apa, yet chiyambireni multiparty umakwera yakuphwa

Omex70
Guest

Congrats Dr Laza Chakwera. It was powerful and inspiring. Malawi as a country needs a leader like you. This DPP led government has failed to manage the affairs of this great nation. What they know is to parade our cheap chiefs ,Cheap Civils society organizations and cheap church leaders on a biased MBC. People who criticize Chakwera for saying the truth just show the evil condition of their hearts.

Paul
Guest

So you think chiefs should not say anything? And that they are cheap? Really? U miss the point. I know you are frastrated but thats not how it works

Rabson
Guest

Chilungamo. This govt. is crooked.

akanyeramtsetere
Guest

ABUSA CHAKWERA, CAN STOP BEING VIOLENT WHEN ADDRESSIN ISSUES OF NATIONAL INTEREST.FOR EXAMPLE, YOU CANNOT CRY FOUL TO TO WHAT THE WORLD BANK HAS DONE BY DEMEANER INSTEAD OF PRAISIN. SURELY YOUR SPEECH LEAVES ALOT TO BE DESIRED.INFACT IT IS HATE SPEECH. WAIT 4 YOUR TIME TO COME WHEN YOU INPLEMENT UNIVERSAL FISP.CHEAP PROPAGANDA. THESE THINGS DONT COME ON A SILVER PLATER,REMEMBER HOW BINGU HAD TO FIGHT FOR FISP? WHO IS FOOLIN WHO? ITS NOT A MATTER OF SPEECH SHOW. WE WANT SUBSTANCE HERE, MWAMVA ABUSA? ANOTHER POINT, PAC IS NOT MCP SYMPATHISER!! KKKKKKKKKKKK

phokoso
Guest

iwe ndiwe mbuzi yeniyeni. cant you see kuti zose wanena chakwera ndi za nzeru?

poul
Guest

if you have a genuine thing to say why kutukwana? this wont lead us anywhere.debate rules say when one castigates the other its a sign that the person has failed and automatically loses marks

The Partriot
Guest
Well spoken Dr Chakwera, let those with eyes read and understand……..Malawians know that our leadership is mediocre and there is no political will to reform. The current status quo favours the ruling party, tribe and region. State machinery which is funded by all taxpayerss regardless of political affiliation is being used for luxurious lives and dancing to the tunes of a priviledged few…..the ruling class. Freeing MBC from the ruling party will be a great start and making appointments into government positions based on merit will be a big achievement for Malawi where nepotism and cronyism are the rules rather… Read more »
Ra!
Guest

More fire opposition this is the only way of constructing the future of Malawi. But try also to revise the city assembly system of electing mayor of the town. Ife a malawi tikufuna mayor tidzimusankha tokha ife anthu osati makhansala okhaokha.
sizoona zimenezo.
more fire opposition.

Hatton
Guest
Bwana Maunitsi, Mukumtamilirayu ndiye Failure number one. The Assemblies of God graph was rising during the time of Malemu Bomba komanso malemu Chapola. Atangobwera abusa opumawa kapena okugwawa, a Chakwera, that marked the fall of Assemblies of God. I am happy Rev Chitsonga is now rebuilding it after Chakwera destroyed it. Za MBC will only make sense when Chakwera explains to Malawians about programmes such as nyimbo za mbumba, kaimbani amalawi, za apayoniya and similar other stinking programmes. Who was being praised in those programmes? dont refer to this dull man as professor. Leave the title to intelligent people of… Read more »
vilephi
Guest
this is shallowest response from the leader of opposition and misdirected. Chakwera’s response is not developmental. He shamelessly digressed from the SONA and started catologuing the nonsese in your article above instead of real issues affecting poor Malawians. He deliberately ignores the good road passing through his home village in Nsalu that is developmental and will open up the area to more social goodies. True, the response was and is powerfully empty devoid of political touch. Speech imeneyo will not attract votes at all. The problem with Chakwera is that he is trying to be successful politically while Mutharika is… Read more »
phokoso
Guest

nseu wa ku nsaru ikhale nkhani,iwe bongwe bwanji.cant you see there is huge corruption in malawi and only those in opposition are being arrested.chaponda is not being arrested for no reasons.muziganiza kaye musalembe apa ngati mulibe fundo kungokhala chete

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