Members of Parliament (MPs) are demanding for the resignation of Minister of Finance, Economic Planning and Development Goodall Gondwe for “failure to execute his duties.”
The MPs demand Gondwe’s immediate resignation or dismissal, saying he has failed his duties by spending about K4 billion without Parliament’s authority on about 86 constituencies belonging to government legislators and others associating with the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP).
Parliament’s Public Accounts Committee (PAC) chairperson Alekeni Menyani, who is also Dedza North West MP (Malawi Congress Party – MCP) said the country’s purse-keeper is abusing the tax-payers funds.
“We are gravely concerned with the manner the minister is handling public funds,” Menyani said.
He also said Anti Corruption Bureau (ACB) should move in to investigate how the funds were abused as gratification to some MPs, saying it is “illegal for Finance Minister to spend without the House’s approval.”
Menyani said the expenditure is criminal as “no money can be spent from the Consolidated Fund without the approval of the House.”
He said Gondwe cannot continue to flout the law, he should resign or the appointing authority should fire him.
According to Nkhata Bay North West MP Comodius Nyirenda (independent) said government legislators wanted the fund to be shared “ secretly” but Malawi News on Saturday exposed that K3.4 billion was allocated ti 86 MPs who voted against the Electoral Reforms Bills in December, translating to K40 million per beneficiary constituency.
But Gondwe said the money also benefitted some opposition MPs, saying it is a first phase of developing rural areas.
According to Gondwe, other legislators will get their share in the next budget session.
He said President Peter Mutharika advised him to concentrate on on rural development and he asked Minister of Local Government and Rural Development Kondwani Nankhumwa to help identify constituencies to benefit in the first phase.
Commentators have also argued that Gondwe is not the same sharp young World Bank economist that he once was and pressure may just be too much for him.
“Malawians need a Finance Minister that gives people hope and confidence ,” social-political commentatorAllan Ntata said.
Malawi News columnist George Kasakula said old age has caught up with Gondwe who holds a position that requires active and fresh minds that are flexible with latest trends in economy.
“ This is nothing personal but the Finance Minister should be spending time telling fireside stories to his grand children, and not managing our economy,” Kasakula wrote.
Many concerned citizens said a younger finance minister would fix the economy.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :