The governing Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) manifesto has now been nick-named Promises & Lies Volume 2 after the famous British reggae band UB40’s 10th album released in 1993 which was very popular in Malawi and around the world.
Those who have read the manifesto say it is full of “promises and lies” such that reading it, one is left with an after taste sourness comparable to swallowing rotten groundnuts.
The manifesto evokes bitter emotions of the song, ‘Promises and Lies’ in which one complains of a cruel lover who behaves like a serpent.
DPP is a serpent that promises love only to bite voters with its venom once voted into power.
Different sections of society have since criticised the DPP manifesto saying it is just another pastiche of empty rhetoric that means nothing beyond the illustrious design. It is lifeless and uninspiring beyond the cheap ink and paper it is printed on. It is robbery of votes by trick.
Below are some of the observations;
11 years later, the lie about Mzuzu Youth Centre resurfaces again in DPP manifesto
In Chapter 20 where the manifesto makes promises to youths, the DPP promises to construct youth centres for recreation including one in Mzuzu. But Northerners are familiar with this lie. The project was launched in 2008 ahead of the 2009 general election campaign under Former President the late Bingu Wa Mutharika but it never materialised.
But 11 years later all that people have seen are two ground-breaking ceremonies under the current Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) administration with the pledge to start construction very soon.
In February this year, The Nation newspaper reported that Capital Hill had since the 2010/11 fiscal year allocated and spent over K300 million on the project, but with nothing to show on the ground. The paper adds that for a decade, over K500 million has been allocated to the project, still nothing.
After the Peter Mutharika administration was ushered into power in 2014, a further K200 million was allocated and part of the funds were used for the ground-breaking ceremony presided over by Grace Chiumia.
The last we checked the Malawi Government through blamed China for failing to construct the youth centre. The blame game by Goodal Gondwe has not gone well with youth leader
YAS Executive Director Charles Kajoloweka. He believes Gondwe and the entire Malawi Government are taking youths for granted.
Construction and renovation of airports is a blue lie
In Chapter 19, pg 96 on improving Tourism, the DPP manifesto makes 14 promises. One of them is that it will construct and upgrade airports Chileka, Lilongwe, Mangochi, Mzuzu, Salima, Likoma and Karonga.
This was also there in 2014 manifesto. In fact, it looks like the renovations that have taken place at Chileka and Kamuzu International Airport (KIA) have not improved anything at all. They have only succeeded in making the situation even worse. Early this year the country was covered in shame when KIA was submerged in water after some rains due to poor drainage system at the airport.
As if that was not enough, South African Airways stopped operating in Malawi due to substandard state of our airports both in Blantyre and Lilongwe. Assessment by an international aviation body found the two facilities fell short of minimum standards both on security and safety of passengers.
Now if the DPP failed to do maintenance work and on the two small airports in the five years they have been in power, it beggars belief as to where they get the courage to promise to construct and upgrade airports in Mangochi, Mzuzu, Salima, Likoma and Karonga.
This is clearly a lie. The DPP has already failed and simply making this promise and many other outlandish promises like introducing cable transport on Mulanje, Zomba and Dedza mountains, hovercraft on Lake Malawi simply to trick Malawians into giving them votes. But we have been this road before. Once bitten, twice is shy.
Construction of Inland Port at Liwonde…where is Nsanje Inland Port
In Chapter 8 on Transport Infrastructure, the DPP manifesto once again makes some high sounding promises but majority are promises and lies. Every Malawian by now knows the big fat lie that is Nsanje Inland Port.
The DPP already failed to construct the Nsanje Inland Port. The place is now bush. Even the boat the once sailed on a trial has never been recovered. Not to mention the heavy loses through investments Malawians with business interests suffered. There was a scramble for land in Nsanje in anticipation of business boom. But all came to nothing. The worst part is that this project continues to draw funds form the national budget, for what purpose, no one knows.
But Peter Mutharika is not content that his brother failed spectacularly in this endeavour. Today Peter Mutharika on page 47 of his manifesto now says he will construct an Inland Port at Liwonde to develop inter-state links with Mozambique, Zambia and Tanzania as well as SADC, COMESA and the rest of the world.
Clearly the DPP leadership must be heavily delusional to think Malawians will fall for this trick again. If his brother who did some commendable development works failed, how can he, Peter Mutharika, succeed? Peter Mutharika must be hypnotised in a false sense of reality to make this promise.
In fact there are many other countless promises that are lies in this chapter such as claiming they will introduce high capacity and electric buses and trains in
Blantyre and Lilongwe cities to reduce traffic. But I will not go into details because by now all Malawians know this manifesto is a joke.
On grants and bursaries to needy students in universities
On page 35 the DPP manifesto claims it hassuccessfully introduced the loans board to administer loans and grants to needy students and that since 2014 it has given loans to 40000 students.In this regard the manifesto promises to double the amount of scholarships and student loans for higher education.
But this is a lie. Because at the moment there are hundreds of needy students who are dropping out of school for luck of fees. Only last week about 50 students were in danger of missing their end of year exams at Luanar because of lack of fees.
But the media recently reported that CEO of the loans board, Chris Chisoni, once an outspoken critique of the DPP government, helped himself to a luxury car worth K89 million out of the money meant for students. Such disregard to the suffering of the needy students has gone without reprimand because this is typical of the DPP leadership; ostentatious and extravagance amid suffering.
The DPP has also failed to increase intake of students into the university by failing to deliver on the construction of five universities it promised in 2014. All that is there to be seen is a foundation stone at Mombera University site in Mzimba. What a shame!
Gloating where they have failed
A recurrent theme throughout the in the manifesto is gloating to have delivered successfully in areas where they have failed spectacularly. Once again it is manifestation of delusional thinking from someone out of touch with reality.
For example in Chapter 12, the DPP boasts to have been successful in providing security to Malawians. The manifesto claims since 2014 crimes has reduced by 24 percent. But we know this is a lie because people with albinos are being kidnapped, killed and dismembered for their body parts on daily basis.
The DPP has failed to arrest any of the perpetrators. Instead the police eliminate suspects with information. They have failed arrest the thugs behind the gruesome murder of ACB officer Njauju. Not to mention those behind the murder of Polytechnic student Robert Chasowa.
Corruption, Fraud and Economic Crimes – The DPP on page 85 on Chapter 17 claims to have succefully implemented their 2014 promise of Zero tolerance towards Corruption , Fraud, theft and any economic crimes. But we know this is a lie. The DPP leadership is steeped in corruption.
The president was caught red handed, his hand in a cookie jar with K145 million in his account, a reward from corruptly obtained money by a business man Zameer Karim. Whether it was a reward for shielding him from arrest we will never know until when it will be possible to prosecute the president.
The list of corruption is endless under DPP. The loot of fuel at ESCOM, failure to recover MSB loans given to DPP sympathisers, the illegal sale of tractors meant for poor farmers and failure to prosecute those involved in another cashgate K230 billion under DPP regime before Joyce Banda came to power.
On ICT in Chapter 18, DPP boasts to have introduced Access to Information Bill. However, this is unfortunate because three years after the bill was passed, it is still not operational. This is a clear indication that passing the bill was just a gimmick to ease pressure. They have no intention of implementing it. It was just lip-service. Typical promises and lies!
Refusing to relinquish powers:
Prominent government critic on social media, writer and Geneva based U.N. employee Stanley Onjezani Kenani recently listed 75 promises the DPP made in 2014 but which it has failed to deliver to Malawians.
Top among those listed by Kenani was the promise that the president would relinquish and trim his presidential powers to appoint directors of statutory bodies (ACB, MACRA etc) as way of making them independent without political interference. But the president is still clinging to those prerogatives. What a shame!
I urge you fellow Malawians to read the manifesto and discover for yourself the lies contained therein.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :