I am not bitter, says fired Police IG Mukhito

Fired Inspector General (IG) of Police Peter Mukhito says he is not bitter for being given the boot by Malawi’s new President Joyce Banda.

Mukhito became the first casualty of the post Bingu wa Mutharika era when President appointed one of the longest serving officers in the Malawi Police Service (MPS), Commissioner Loti Dzonzi, as the new IG .

His dismissal came barely a day after Banda assumed office as Malawi’s Head of State, following the death of Mutharika on April 5 due to a cardiac arrest.

Mukhito: No suicide bid

“It was a privilege to serve as Inspector General of Police,” said Mukhito when he featured on Daybreak Malawi programme on Capital FM on Wednesday.

“l knew immediately when I was appointed that the next step is the exit,” he said playing down specualtions that he had shot himself in suicide bid.

Mukhito said he believes the re-alignment process being carried  by President Banda is for the betterment of the nation and that from his stand, bitterness does not arise.

“I am not bitter. I actually I send a message of goodwill to my successor, Loti Dzonzi,” he said.

“We in the Malawi police service we  don’t ask, we are made to get commands from the authorities. We don’t question. I can’t question why I have been [given the boot].

“It’s a decision which has been made by the Commander in chief and it’s a decision I have to respect with all my heart,” he added.

Asked whether he could assess his performance as Police chief, Mukhito said: “I tried to do all my best.”

He added: “The responsibility of Inspector General  is to give strategic  direction of Malawi Police Service.”

Mukhito said “I could have not performed well in some areas” but that he did his best.

“I have gone out without regrets,” he said.

On the appointment of Dzonzi as Inspector General of Police, Mukhito advised him to work professionally for the benefit of all Malawians.

Next step

On what would be his next step after being fired, the former top cop say he will be available to offer advice when asked and contribute to national development.

“I am yet to see what will be a next avenue,” he said.

“I am a farmer, I have passion to agriculture but I believe I will contribute to the development of the nation,” added. “I believe I will make contribution to my country.”

Other casualties

Mukhito is not the only casualty; President Banda on Tuesday unveiled a shake-up of top officials charged with government finances and media, purging loyalists of the late leader Mutharika.

She named a new secretary to the Treasury, appointing career bureaucrat Radson Mwadiwa, who also becomes chairman of the state-owned Malawi Savings Bank replacing Joseph Mwanamvekha.

Also sacked is Patricia Kaliati, the information minister who publicly insisted that Mutharika was alive more than one day after his death on Thursday.

The new minister is Moses Kunkuyu, a parliamentarian who broke away from Mutharika’s Democratic Progressive Party to press for reforms.

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