Minister of Information and Communications Technology Nicholas Dausi says there is still austerity measures by the government and dismissed accusations of the purchase of new President’s luxurious top-of-the-range Lexus, saying it was necessary addition.
Dausi, who is also government spokesperson, was featured on Times Exclusive interview on Times TV hosted by no-holds barred presenter Brian Banda.
Banda quizzed Dausi why government which is struggling to feed 6.5 million food insecure Malawian, amid many economic challenges, President Peter Mutharika decided to buy K100 million ($100 000) vehicle.
Dausi said the procurement of the posh Lexus vehicle was necessary.
“Do you want to say because you want salt from you neighbour, you go there naked?”
“There is prudence in the way we have run finances,” said Dausi
Dausi said: “For the first time since 1964 President Arthur Peter Mutharika has encountered one of the most calamities, drought, floods, cashgate, donor freeze, but we have managed to develop the country.”
The government spokesman then accused the host Banda and editor-in-chief of Times Group George Kasakula of being fierce critics of the government.
“You Brian Banda and you have a friend George Kasukala, you are wrong people, and you make some persuasive arguments to put the government in disarray. That is wrong,” said Dausi.
Asked on whether President Mutharika will act on 13 files of the forensic audit in the grand corruption which allegedly involve some serving cabinet ministers, Dausi said there are just “conjectures and malafide”.
On worsening corruption in government, Dausi said those who make accusations should bring tangible evidence.
On why the President established a Commission of Inquiry on Zambia maize import saga but could not fire Minister of Agriculture George Chaponda who is accused to have played a role in misprocurement, Dausi hit by saying “you should not have pathological hatred with Honourable Chaponda.”
Banda also asked Dausi on perception that President Mutharika is “passive” but the Minister of Information reacted angrily, saying that was disrespectful to slur a Head of State names.
“You cannot call the president to be passive. He is the President and he deserves respect,” said Dausi.
During the interview, Banda also asked Dausi, who was former state chief spy, on his appointment to Cabinet, saying observers are giving an analogy that he has been drafted in Cabinet “to deal with him.”
He said: “It is extremely unfair, erroneous, and wrong and malafidy.”
On his new role as government spokesman, Dausi e argues that the purpose of government is not just to create economic growth, but also to promote individual happiness.
“The intention of politics is the maximisation of happiness,” said Dausi.
Dausi gave over 30 quotations during his answers in the interview and said to him learning is a continuous process and that he strongly believe in the job training, quoting Socrates : “I am wise because I know am foolish.”
The government spokesman pointed out that President Mutharika takes his time to watch Times Exclusive program on Times TV.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :