Foreign Affairs minister Francis Katsaira says the government has rejected many applications for the UN trip following tough control measures the government has put in place this year to avoid a repeat of last year when a staggering 116 people went on the trip.
Katsaira said many people, who were irrelevant to the trip, were applying for visas to go to the United States of America for the UN trip.
“We detected them earlier because of the tough measures we have put in place. We instructed the US embassy to inform us of anyone applying to go to the US for the UN trip and the president instructed all cabinet ministers to tell him of any ministry official going on the trip,” he said.
Katsaira however refused to say how many are on the trip this year and the cost of the whole trip, saying the government is working on that.
Mutharika leaves for the US for the UN meeting on Thursday.
“Let me assure Malawians that very few will this year be on the trip” said Katsaira who admitted the government made a terrible mistake last year and has learnt a lesson out of the mess.
Former Foreign Affairs minister George Chaponda lied last year whilst in the US that the government had taken 20 people only to be contradicted by Mutharika who conceded over 100 people were on the trip.
Chaponda never apologised and was never fired as he is one of the mist trusted innercircles of Mutharika.
He is now minister of Agriculture and vice president of the party and groomed to takeover from Muthasrika when his two five year presidential term of office expires in 2024 although he is ageing now.