How Covid-19 hit  Malawi cabinet:  The Kamuzu Palace meetings

Strategy meeting for the 2025 elections by Malawi Congress party (MCP) gurus in December 2020 at Kamuzu Palace in Lilongwe may have contributed to the Covid-19 attack on some cabinet members who lost two of their colleagues on Tuesday.

MCP’s Norah Soko: Died with Covid -19
Ministers including  Homeland Security Richard Chimwendo Banda with Minister of Information Gospel Kazako attended the meeting in the president’s oval office on Dec. 21, and the following day labour minister Ken Kandodo reporting having contracted the coronavirus. He has since recovered. Another minister, Rashid Gaffar, is self-isolating at home.

Transport Minister Sidik Mia and Local Government Minister Lingson Berekanyama both succumbed to the disease in the early hours of Tuesday.

They were senior members of MCP, the main partner in Tonse alliance that unseated immediate past president Peter Mutharika in a cour-sanction fresh election in June last year, delivering victory to President Lazarus Chakwera.

Insiders at Kamuzu Palace said ministers especially those from the MCP in the Tonse Alliance government had been holding meetings at Kamuzu Palace together with some MCP gurus to strategize on the 2025 elections and the virus may have attacked the members during this time.

“This should be around 21 December or thereabout but before Christmas when these people had meetings and parties here and remember everyone that time had relaxed as we thought Covid-19 was gone. This is the time many were infected,” revealed an impeccable source at the palace.

Colloborated another source: “They were discussing what they will do in 2025 after President Lazarus Chakwera indicated that he will not have another go at the presidency and that is why most of the meeting the President was not in attendance and left them to discuss freely.”

Mia, who was MCP deputy president, had been tipped as a possible successor to Chakwera.

The first one to fall prey of the Covid-19 was Labour Minister Ken Kandodo who fortunately recovered from the pandemic and was followed by Deputy Speaker of Parliament Madalitso Kazombo who is making steady progress of recovery.

These two were said to have been part of the MCP 2025 strategy meetings at Kamuzu Palace.

The others who are said to have attended the meetings and have since passed on Tuesday included Ms. Norah Soko, an MCP political strategist  from Kasungu.

The other MCP gurus who attended the meetings include cabinet ministers Richard Chimwendo Banda, Eisenhower Mkaka, Abida Mia, Robin Lowe, Khumbize Kandodo-Chiponda and MCP officials Sam Kawale and MCP administrative secretary Wickford Sulamoyo.

Minister of Industry Roy Kachale, a son of former president Joyce Banda, also disclosed he tested positive Covid-19 and was steadily recovering in self-isolation.

Chakwera has  blamed the spike on decreased vigilance during the festive season.

On Tuesday, the President summoned an emergency meeting of the Presidential task force  on Covid-19 to issue potential new measures and hinted on possibility of declaring a ‘State of Emergency’ where the military will enforce curfew after he had already declared a state of national disaster.

“This declaration of the national state of the disaster is but the first step towards the possible declaration of the state of emergency, subject to consultation with and approval from the defense and security committee of the national assembly as stipulated in section 45 of the constitution,” Chakwera said.

Malawi is facing a resurgence in coronavirus cases, with about 30 percent of confirmed infections registered in the past two weeks alone.

“We must all rise together and do what the health experts tells us to do,” Chakwara said in his speech, urging Malawians not to lose hope.

The President encouraged Malawians to police one another in observing Covid-19 preventive measures, which include washing hands with soap, observing social distance recommendations and putting on face coverings.

“We are fighting for our very lives and our future,” he said.

Malawi’s government was barred from implementing a lockdown last year after a High Court judge Kenyatta Nyirenda ruled the restrictions would unfairly impact the poorest and most vulnerable members of society.

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Mbonga Matoga
Mbonga Matoga
6 months ago

Fake news iyi, it’s shameful how low our journalists have sank in this country……writing fake stories to remain relevant or for being slaves of bad politicians, what a shame.

And some uncivilised readers just believe everything story they read without asking questions…….I can assure you there’s no grain of truth in this article.

Medsonchimudima3@gmail.com
6 months ago

Eish very sad to our nation and mcp
I was also shocked when I saw photo of the president Chakwera and Madonna without wearing face masks.

Genghis Khan
6 months ago

Less than a year into government, you are busy organising for 2025, yet the country is in serious health emergency.

Malawi walero
Malawi walero
6 months ago

Atsabisalire COVID19. Akuopa mafunso a 1 million jobs, free electricity and water connections.
Tikukumbutsani tikangoika malirowo

Don
Don
6 months ago

Party functions should not be held at our palaces, the palaces we finance using our taxes. That is abuse of public resources

National Ceo
National Ceo
6 months ago
Reply to  Don

That’s true we have MCP National and district headquarters office in Lilongwe

Hawell
6 months ago

If this is true that such notable ministers who are national figures were reluctant with covid 19 preventive measures then its a shame! Mwanapiye kugwetsa chitosi mkhola ndithudi amayamba awona amake anatani? So the very same leaders who are making noise on compliance to covid 19 measures are the same violating what messages are they passing to malawians? Have they ever known that leadership is a serious business? And that whatever a leader does followers do the same? If we say tonse alliance leaders are killing malawians are we wrong? A leader must live to his/her words this is very… Read more »

John chidongo
6 months ago

A Malawi tikungotokota kodi zonse tikulemba kudandaula a Chakwera ndi aChilimawo amawerenga? Kapena a Kazakowo amawerenga ndikuuwauza kuti anthu akunena izi. Tinayawayika pampando ndife owachotsanso ndife ngati sakutsogolera bwino. Tisachite kudikira kuti zithu zifike poipa zambiri zionongeke plus kutaya miyoyo. A chite step down tilimbike ngati mmene timachitira mademo muja. Kusiya kumangoyankhula

mother
mother
6 months ago

chomwe umapitira ku mcp ndi chani akukonza komweko umafuna kokaferako. wayenda ndi udf,dpp, pp rest in pis sidik mia

mother
mother
6 months ago

Zayambira kumtunda konko hehe!!!!! covid kulibe ndi asthma, bp , diabetes ndiyochita kupanga. koma chilima akukumbukira mawu amenewa? nanga lero yachokera kuti? atiuza bwino. ajoyce ali kuti? ankati peter akunamiziratu paja. mulungutu si james wayamba kuwakantha. boma lowinawina kukamulanda mwini wake ? mphanvu yamulungu wa asrael imeneyo. yona anathawa kukalalikira anaiwala kuti mulungu sazembeka.

Assange
6 months ago

Underlying issues come mostly with age. These are BPs, diabetes etc. Asthma is the worst since the person is already short of oxygen. Do we have the sophisticated ventilators here? Oxygen is not enough since you have to breathe it in. A ventilator is like an artificial breathing mechanism. The problem with these power hungry guys is that they forget that one day they would get sick and die. They cannot equip the hospitals because they say the government would fly them to Garden City or India. With Covid-19 they have no where to go. They waste money on buying… Read more »

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