Goodall says Information Bill among ‘new tougher conditions’ for aid resumption

Finance minister Goodall Gondwe has said Access to Information Bill is one of the new conditions donors have told the government to pass into law before they resume aid.

Finance Minister Goodal Gondwe in the centre flanked by  Major General Namangale and Police Commissioner Martha Suwedi. Pic by Chikumbutso Kajani
Finance Minister Goodal Gondwe in the centre flanked by Major General Namangale and Police Commissioner Martha Suwedi. Pic by Chikumbutso Kajani

Malawi lost up to 40 percent of the budget support aid it was receiving from foreign donors when the European Union, the World Bank, and the United Kingdom suspended aid last year because of the corruption scandal, known as “Cashgate.”

Speaking on Wednesday in parliament when he presented a ministerial statement on the outlook of the economy, Gondwe said there are also other sets of bills that the government is being pressurised and pushed by donors before they resume aid.

He did not however say when the Access to Information bill would be tabled to accelerate the resumption of the much needed aid whose withdrawal has severely crippled the economy.

Gondwe said other areas that donors want the Malawi government to look into critically before the resumption of aid include the wage administration to ensure that Capital Hill expunge ghost workers.

The donors also want change in farm inputs programme, saying they want fertilizer to e sold by the private sector instead of the state run Smallholder Farmers Fertiliser Revolving Fund of Malawi (SFFRM).

The Finance Minister, however, raised expectations of donor aid resumption to a new bar, saying he was extremely hopeful Malawi would be on track with the IMF extended credit facility.

Gondwe said despite the fact that the World Bank and European Union slapped the government with another set of 20 new and tougher demands as conditions for the resumption of aid to his country, apart from the usual IMF conditions, the government is upbeat that all the needed aid will be resumed by the fourth quarter of 2016.

“We need to be patient, we need to work hard as we pass through the turbulence;” said Gondwe.

Gondwe advised public officers to cut down external travel, saying it is sad that some officers take this as an income generating venture.

He also asked hospital management to exercise financial prudence, saying the government has noted with concern that in some cases, government had fully funded hospitals but management had used the money for its travel allowances leaving ambulances grounded and failing to buy food for patients.

“I am happy that my colleague, the minister of health is taking this seriously, he is in Mangochi meeting the hospital management,” he said.

“We are passing through turbulent times that were started by the floatation of the kwacha and withdrawal of donor aid. We need to take strong adjustment measures, strongest sacrifices,” he said.

Gondwe said Malawi will soon achieve its economic stability but could not say when exactly.

The Finance Minister said the current high inflation rate hovering at 25 per cent; the high interest rates and volatile exchange rate are pushing the cost of life up and enhancing poverty.

Malawian government has a zero-aid budget for 2015/16 as part of an attempt to win back the trust of major donors who do not want to see their money wasted.

According to Gondwe, Malawi government policy now is to embark on a stringent limitation of the need for budgetary support as Lilongwe is embarking on a public finance management reform program.

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The Patriot
The Patriot
5 years ago

If our leaders think passing the ATI bil is a tough condition then we must be afraid, very afraid! Ndithudi a Goodall Gondwe, APM , Kusaila etal what is tough about the ATI bill? People are suffering in villages and towns, why cant you our leaders do the needful and pass the bill? It is very shameful for the Mzungu to be setting conditions for aid, when those same conditions are what we need as Malawians. Most Malawians want the ATI bill koma inuyo ma leaders simukufuna, where is the love for your people? Our government is supposed to work… Read more »

maganizo
5 years ago

AZUNGUWA ATOPA NDIKUTITHAZA MMALAO MOTI ANGONENA KOMA ZIFUKWA 20. TIVOMEREZE ATITHANDIZA ZAKA 50 NDIZAMBIRI TALEPHERA NDI IFE. KUBA SIKUNGATHE POPEZA ZIMAYAMBIRA KULIKULU KOMWEKO KOMA KUMAFINYA ANA. IWO AKAMANGIDWA 2HRS UMVA KUTI ALIKUCHIPATALA HBP. KOMA WOBA MBUZI ZAKA WOSAPITA KUCHIPATALA. AWUZENI KUTI ATISIYE TIZIVUTIKA.

Enawa
Enawa
5 years ago

Ngati ukuwafunabe amai kuti azilamula uwatenge azikalamula banja lanja lako koma dzikoli president ndi APM as of now

Chingolopiyo
Chingolopiyo
5 years ago

How many presidents has Mw got? The pic shows another president for Malawi

nyenyezi
nyenyezi
5 years ago

Iam ashamed with this government,, if passing the ATI is a tough condition for APM, ndiye dzikoli mulikwanitsa? Munangogweratu izi sizinali mbali yanu, inu koma choko kuphunzitsa azungu mabodza, ngati unakukanika u miister of education ndiye umati dziko ungalithe? Ngati samaba ndipo palibe chomer akubisa let the ATI be passed into law, honey moon is over. Sinthawi ya Kamuzu ino yoti tizikhala mumdzima wosadziwa zomwe zikuchitika mdziko mwathu momwe. Moreover Pitala kunalibe m’mene tinkavotera multiparty, ndiye asatiphere ufulu wathu, iye anali kokudya polony kwawo kwa azungu, zautsiru basi.

Njalayamalamuchiuno
Njalayamalamuchiuno
5 years ago

Every body now agrees that our female president worked wonders in bringing the economy in the right path in the two years she was in power. On the contrary the country has never seen any comfort since these men, under DPP placed themselves on the driving seat. The country is run like an experimental field. More time is spent on finger pointing and propaganda than leaders championing development. More action is needed than mare talk.

Judah
5 years ago

This is not the issue don’t cheat us but but but but 577

vin mongu
vin mongu
5 years ago

this business of donors doing the logical things whihc our own governments donot is sometimes a mystery. ndalama mukuzifuna but want to make life tough for yourselves. delaying ATI bill because you want to steal, delaying FISP private sector involvement because mwina amasapota zipani zina or ADMARC igwa. no wonder we are a failed state

mphatso
mphatso
5 years ago

Donors will keep on shifting goalpost once you meet tehre conditions they will give you 10% of aid and then will tell you that to get more a new set of conditions will be given. I can see due to economic collapse most malawians should head to europe as migrants as we have no choice Donors wants malawis economy to collapse let them look after us in there countries

John
John
5 years ago

I DONT SEE ANY TOUGH CONDITIONS HERE. IS PASSING ACCESS TO INFORMATION BILL A TOUGH THING TO DO? ONLY THOSE THAT HAVE SECRETS TO HIDE CAN BE SCARED. BUT A GOVT THAT HAS NOTHING TO HIDE PALIBE NKHANI APA.

ZIKUONETSERATU POYERA KUTI KUBOMAKO MUKUBA TOO MUCH!

IN FACT, YOU DONT NEED DONORS TO PUSH YOU TO PASS ACCESS TO INFORMATION BILL.

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