Goodall, Nankhumwa face growing calls to resign: Malawi papers add their voice over K4bn ‘quick grant’

Finance Minister Goodall Gondwe and Local Government Minister Kondwani Nankhumwa are facing a public revolt and growing pressure to resign over K4 billion “quick grant” project meant for rural development.

Nankhumwa (left) with Finance and Economic development minister Goodall Gondwe: Under fire over K4bn payout

Calls for the two ministers’ resignation have come from far and wide practically since the contentious money was initially earmarked for development projects in 86 constituencies but will now be shared equally by all the 193 constituencies, meaning that each constituency will receive K20.7 million.

Two Malawi daily newspapers, The Nation and The Daily Times, have added their voice to the call by civil society organisations (CSOs) and Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace (CCJP), an arm of the Episcopal Conference of Malawi (ECM), that the two ministers should step down and that President Peter Mutharika should also address the nation on the issue.

“CSOs must press for accountability”, The Nation said in its editorial comment.

The paper noted that there has not been any transparency regarding the source of money and how it will be disbursed.

“We think there is no moral justification on the part of the minister [Gondwe] to keep Malawians in the dark on the source of the money,” reads the editorial in part.

It urges the CSOs to look beyond the Finance minister and press the Executive to “ensure that transparency and accountability is exercised in its usage” since money is for Malawians which they pay through taxes.

The paper appeals to CSOs, who have been shrinking in the country,   to keep the whole government machinery in check for its excesses in ensuring that they track how taxpayers’ money is used “for the benefit of all not just a few selfish individuals.”

“Goodall Gondwe deserves a boot,” The Daily Times declared in its editorial comment.

It concurred with their rival daily, The Nation, that one important cornerstone of a functioning democracy is that all public officers should be transparent and accountable to the populace.

Daily Times which is one of the titles published by Times Group, takes pride of playing its rightful watchdog role as its sister publication Malawi News  exposed “Goodall’s underhand tactics”  when it was the first to report that the government had allocated K40 million each to 86 Members of Parliament, most of whom voted against the Electoral Reforms (Amendment) Bills.

The paper backs calls for Gondwe to immediately resign, saying his role in the saga is a huge betrayal to Malawians as an entrusted keeper of the republic kitty.

“It is a fact that, anywhere in the world, managers that misappropriate or fail to properly protect or give full account of resources of the organisation are axed and prosecuted to the full extent of the law and all the ill-gotten gains are returned to the rightful owners,” the editorial reads.

The paper concluded that the Finance minister’s behaviour is “at best the proof that the country does not need him near any public purse.”

Gondwe insisted the money was from taxes, grants and borrowing and was saved from re-adjustments of the 2017/18 budget that saw cuts to the development budget.

But University of Livingstonia (Unilia) political analyst George Phiri has said the ideal situation would be for President Mutharika to fire Gondwe and Nankhumwa.

Another political commentator from Chancellor College Ernest Thindwa said while the call is necessary, the feasibility of Gondwe resigning is doubtful, arguing Malawi is a society where voluntary resignation is not practised.

Capital Hill has argued that the money, termed quick grant project, is meant for rural development.

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Malawi@Crossroads
Guest

Un-Honourable Gondwe and Nankhumwa, your time is up! Start packing your briefcases.

NGWENYA
Guest
NGWENYA

Brother Kulenje Malawi,
Musaphatikizepo Church apa achurch atitopetsa if tsopano anangodana ndi Kamuzu koma awa a DPP akumadya nawo ndrama zinenezi ndilindichikhulupiriro a PAC analandilanso. Ndiye aBvumbwe ndi gulu lao tatopa nawo. Katangale tsopano akyabila Mchurch kukamalizila kwa a DPP. tisatchule a church pamenepa.

kayi
Guest

We managed on Chaponda, for sure we need to push this and make sure justice prevail. Sorry for the old man to end his career like this…. a Gondwe kuba ndikoipa plzzzzz…. We r on you!!!!

Ngulenjemalawi
Guest
Ngulenjemalawi

CSO, Churches, and many wise people who loves this country are saying this move is bad and a sign of huge corruption taking in this DPP government, Yet Billy Banda, mugeme Kalilani, and other evil and corrupt people are busy polishing this evil act on their evil radio station are busy.This is total nosense. I suppoort the call for these 2 to resign other wise we need to take a step may be demonstrate. Osawasiya anthuwa chabe aba kokwanila. kodi pakanapanda daily times ndani akanaziwa izi.

#DzukaniAmalawi
Guest
#DzukaniAmalawi

This is clearly a tactical error from the Head of State. The tardy execution of a legitimate instruction from the president is putting the whole ruling party into disrepute; unfortunately just before the tripartite elections in May 2019. Bwana president, find a smart way of taking the party and the cabinet out of this mess by either reshuffling the two implicated ministers (who are just the executors) to less important portfolios or ask them to fall on your sword. The same public that got DPP into power is also asking you to do the honourable thing now, otherwise they will… Read more »

Chidi Mbwengu
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Chidi Mbwengu

Gondwe and Nankhumwa were very much part of the mid night six if everyone recalls well. They are the ones who were at forefront in preventing JB from taking over govt. This combination has reappeared again to steal money for campaigns for their MPs after dpp failed miserably at the by-election herd last year. If this combination is not stopped, some of us have clearly indicated that theft will not stop and Peter will not fire them because they have assured him that they will mobilize funds for elections at any cost. Dpp is scared of loosing in the next… Read more »

Adada
Guest
Adada

Akutitu ndi Quick Grant Project… so just demand Accountability of the funds before and after disbursements and for my brother Goodall, amati a Good dancer knows when its time to leave the stage :personally I think you have lost steam and amalawi sachedwa kuiwala ndikale we will completely forget your good work, sir..kapumuleni kukaya vikhawo na nthochi ziliko muchali nankhongono

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