MCP shadow cabinet raises questions on nepotism

The Malawi Congress Party (MCP) has attracted criticism following the release of its shadow Cabinet which observers have said is far from being nepotistic just like the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) current cabinet set which has the majority from the southern region.

While President Arthur Peter Mutharika appointed his cabinet mainly from the south with his ‘homeboys’ from Thyolo and part of the Lomwe belt making the bulk of the ministers, MCP President Lazarus Chakwera has followed suit with all the members of his shadow cabinet coming from the central region.

Kabwila:  Shadow minister come from the sitting MPs and not out side parliament
Kabwila: Shadow minister come from the sitting MPs and not out side parliament

“This MCP cabinet is not different from what Malawians have been complaining about Mutharika’s 20-man cabinet which has almost everyone from the south,” said one commentator on social media platform.

However, Chakwera has defended his choice of cabinet arguing that since the opposition ministers shadow government ministers in Parliament, MCP is justified since almost all its members of parliament are from the central region.

“This is just like what happens in the United Kingdom where an opposition party has shadow secretaries from the sitting MPs and not out of the House of Commons. How could someone from outside Parliament counter argue on policy matters which are tackled inside Parliament,” said MCP spokesperson Jessie Kabwila in an interview.

The MCP shadow cabinet, however, conforms to the DPP administration’s lean Cabinet. The MCP shadow Cabinet announced in Parliament on Monday comprises 21 members with leader of opposition Lazarus Chakwera as president and head of the defence force, but he has no deputy president.

Joseph Njobvuyalema has been maintained as Minister of Finance, Economic Planning and Development in keeping with his party role as spokesperson on finance matters in Parliament while Peter Chakwantha, who chairs the Legal Affairs Committee, has been appointed shadow minister of Justice.

MCP deputy spokesperson Ezekiel Ching’oma heads Information and newcomer Rhino Chiphiko heads Transport while long-time legislator Vitus Dzoole Mwale has been tasked with Labour and Willard Gwengwe will head Trade and Industry.

The MCP shadow Cabinet has three women, Juliana Lunguzi for Health, Khumbize Chiponda for Foreign Affairs and  Kabwila for Gender and Social Welfare.

The shadow cabinet has four deputy ministers, Patrick Chilondola for Defence, Everson Makowa Mwale for Agriculture, Langton Nkhosa Kamwendo for Education and Alec Chitete for Civil Service.

All these are MPs from the central region.

Chakwera has been advocating for a need to legislate the size of the Cabinet so it does not remain a campaign promise, which can be ignored once a party is in power.

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George Lihoma
George Lihoma
6 years ago

This reminds me of an old Mutabaruka’s song in which he sings ‘…when you are not in power,its easy to say this and that.But when you are in power,its totally different.’….

ACHEWA
ACHEWA
6 years ago

MCP is brave party, since multiparty in Malawi, how many parties formed a shadow cabinet? MCP, next govt ufune usafune.

United Party
United Party
6 years ago

It would appear most commentators are ignorant about who goes into the shadow cabinet despite Hon Chakwera clearly explaining to them. Shadow cabinet members unlike the executive have to be sitting MPs of the Party (In this case the opposition). This limits the leader of opposition choice of his cabinet. This is more complicated in MCP as almost all MPs are from the Central Region.

Zuze
Zuze
6 years ago
Reply to  United Party

That is a blue lie. So according to your reasoning small political parties that have no representation in parliament cannot have MPs? What a foolish way of self-blinding!

Mtupatupa
Mtupatupa
6 years ago

I can see the federation working just by going with what DPP & MCP have done in the appointment of cabinet and shadow cabinet

BUSHIRI
BUSHIRI
6 years ago

Kodi MCP ilipobe??? Mukhaula

MAVUTO
MAVUTO
6 years ago

very good at criticizing ….look at what they have done. these are the worst racists. ask chakwera , when shall he visit southern region, if he thinks he can rule this country from sentolo alone then akudzikwata mchala ha…….ha,,,,,,,hhaaaaaa abusa

Zoshola
6 years ago
Reply to  MAVUTO

Iwe Mavuto ndiwe mbuzi. Mulungu kwao siku South. Wait and see, mufa imfa yowawa. Kubera sikudzatheka Chauta akadzakana.

Pasan
Pasan
6 years ago

am told dat once apon atime(1992~1993) aford wz almithy party with support 4m all corners of mw .koma atauzidwa kut tatutsileni ur cabinet to b ,masses of PIPO WERE disappointented 2 find out tha almost all member of cabint were 4m northern mw and executive were ful f northers.mcp pamene ili Kuopposition shud try to giv hope not copy and paste the dpp’s nepotism.Ofcourse AtengelA Merit Pipo Like Jumbe Winayese Amadziwa Ndi Amuna Paulimi. MY FREE ADVICE TO MCP AS NOW BWANJ ATAKOPA SOME MPS WHO STIL INDP 4M NORTH &SOUTH SO DAT THEY BUILD STRONG BASE N THEIR AREAS.

Mthako wa Alhomwe
Mthako wa Alhomwe
6 years ago
Reply to  Pasan

And so you are told by your tribalistic grumpy granny….and expect to tell facts.

cherel
cherel
6 years ago

tingogawanapo apa, zausilu!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Zomba Zero
6 years ago

what do you expect of MCP? Actually, this is beyond regionalism. It is called cronyism. Over 80% of the MCP shadow cabinet is from Lilongwe, the home of ex-Reverend Lazarus Chakwera. Imeneyo ndiye MCP!!!

tsk tsk tsk
tsk tsk tsk
6 years ago

Ha ha ha, it now okay because the self righteous ones are the ones that have done it this time. However there are three people from the Northern region in Peters Cabinet, and those are ALL the people who won on a dpp ticket up north, there are two people from the central region one from the eastern region and the rest are from the southern region contrast Chakweras choices and their implications. Now the reason given is that all their MPs barring the speaker are from one region, how different is this from what the DPP has done? mesa… Read more »

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