This week, President Lazarus Chakwera sexed up his list of advisors by appointing even more.
As of today, Chakwera has about 12 advisors. Former president Peter Mutharika had a team of seven advisers on political affairs, economic affairs, civil society, religion, domestic policy, parliamentary and national unity and on women affairs.
Among those appointed are Malawi Congress Party (MCP) campaign director Moses Kunkuyu as adviser on chiefs matters; Lilongwe North East legislator (MCP) Maxwell Thyolera as adviser on parliamentary affairs; and People’s Party (PP) vice-president (South) Ephraim Chibvunde as adviser on political affairs.
Earlier, the President appointed UTM Party campaign director Lucius Banda as adviser on arts and youth; former Association of People with Albinism coordinator Overstone Kondowe as adviser on disability and persons with albinism; the Reverend Brian Kamwendo as special adviser on religious affairs; Sheikh Hashim Abbas as deputy special adviser on religious affairs; Adamson Mkandawire as chief adviser on rural transformation and development; Dr Samson Lembani as chief adviser on public policy and governance; Chris Chaima Banda as chief adviser on strategy and manifesto implementation; and Collen Zamba as chief adviser on sustainable development goals and international relations.
To be honest, the move isn’t inspiring at all
It’s not inspiring because, one, the President doesn’t actually need these advisors and, two, where he needs one, it must be on specific emerging issues not covered by the Cabinet.
Let’s face facts here: The Cabinet is the president’s fundamental advisory council. Cabinet Ministers, through heading ministries, have technocrats who provide every policy direction with regards to how the country should be governed.
To mean, there is no information much better to help the President govern besides the one Cabinet Ministers get from their technocrats.
So what do these special advisors to the President do, really?
If you have a fully-fletched Ministry of Youth, what does the special advisor to the President do?
If you have a fully-fletched Ministry of Civic Education and National Unity, why should the president have a special advisor on religion?
It’s even shocking to learn that Chakwera has a special advisor on Christian affairs, and another special advisor on Muslim affairs. What is this?
We are not against special advisors. But we believe they are needed to fill specific avenues where the President needs privileged information he cannot acquire from the ministries.
Otherwise, the list of 12 we have seen and their duties, sounds more as Chakwera’s move to appease party loyalists he didn’t find anywhere to reward them.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :