MCP’s Harry Mkandawire scathing remarks against UTM draw public criticism

Malawi Congress Party (MCP) second deputy president, Harry Mkandawire, has drawn public anger and criticism for suggesting that Malawi Enterprise Development Fund (MEDF) will give priority to MCP supporters when disbursing loans.

Harry Mkandawire (C) at the MCP rally in Karonga 

Mkandawire is on record telling MCP supporters in Karonga that they will be the first beneficiaries of the Fund as President Lazarus Chakwera is now running and managing state affairs.

But his remarks have not gone down well with governance and human rights activists and some well-meaning MCP supporters, who are now exerting pressure on Chakwera, who is also MCP president, to denounce Mkandawire’s seemingly discriminatory sentiments about the loan.

The Centre for Democracy and Economic Development Initiatives (CDEDI), in a statement issued on Sunday, is challenging Chakwera to publicly distance himself from the retrogressive and highly insensitive remarks Mkandawire made.

“CDEDI has learnt with shock about Mkandawire’s remarks were captured in an audio, which has now gone viral on social media, repeating the very same mistakes made by the previous government which is in sharp contrast to what the  Tonse Alliance promised Malawians. Mkandawire made highly insensitive and derogatory remarks to the Vice President Dr. Saulosi Chilima,” says Namiwa.

In his unwarranted political overzealousness, Mkandawire is heard giving instructions to prioritise members of the MCP when government starts giving out the MEDEF loans because they belong to the ruling party.

Namiwa has described Mkandawire’s remarks as highly insensitive and derogatory to the State Vice President Dr. Saulosi Chilima as Mkandawire is heard in an audio clip lambasting Chilima, arguing the powers of the Vice Presdient are not equal to those of the President, and that he should not be acting as if he is the President of this country.

“Ironically, Mkandawire’s remarks are coming barely a day after President Chakwera smartly avoided to committ to Malawians in his inaugural State of the Nation Address (SoNA), a roadmap on how he would work with the National Assembly to ensure that he empowers the office of the Vice President, as per the promise made by the Tonse Alliance partners.

“ It is against this background that CDEDI and indeed all patriotic Malawians are looking forward to hearing from President Chakwera on the steps he is going to take in empowering the Veep’s office. Given the lukewarm approach he has taken to honour his promise, it is not surprising therefore, to hear some MCP party loyalists discrediting the Vice President, barely three months after the two were ushered into the high office,” he says in the statement.

Just to refresh the voters’ memories, President Chakwera in his capacity as the Tonse Alliance torch bearer accused his predecessor Prof. Arthur Peter Mutharika for underutilizing  Chilima and disrespecting the constitutional office, that of the Vice Presidency.

Instead of walking the talk, President Chakwera has all of a sudden developed cold feet on his promise, and has been overtaken by his party zealots who are now fighting the office of the Vice President.

“Of late, we have also witnessed verbal attacks between supporters of the MCP and the UTM on social media, a development which can be construed as an indicator that all is not well among the Tonse Alliance partners, specifically the UTM and the MCP.

“We have also recently witnessed a scramble for Members of Parliament (MPs) between the MCP and the UTM who are enticing independent MPs and those from other political parties such as the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) to join either the UTM or the MCP, a situation which is very worrisome, because the UTM and the MCP are already in bed in the Tonse Alliance administration. One would wonder, therefore, as to what this scramble of MPs is all about! One thing we can be sure of, is that something big is cooking between the MCP and the UTM, and it smells bad for the peace-loving Malawians! This ticking bomb has finally been confirmed by Mr. Mkandawire’s unfortunate remarks.”

Namwia said his organisation does not only find MMkandawire’s thinking as retrogressive, but also very careless considering that not long-ago government sent on forced leave the MEDF senior management team for purportedly politicizing the loan disbursement process.

“ This begs the question as to how different is this action compared to the new ‘police directive’ by the MCP Vice President for the north?” continues Namiwa in the statement.

He further cautioned Mkandawire and Chakwera to desist from taking Malawians for granted, arguing people did not vote for MCP alone in the court-sanctioned fresh presidential election on June 23, 2020, but the Tonse Alliance, which is a coalition of nine political parties.

“It is therefore not wise for any of the leaders for the nine political parties to take to the political podium to claim victory in the June 23 Fresh Presidential Elections (FPE) as a ruling party. This far, CDEDI is advising President Chakwera that he should remember that the Tonse Alliance partners promised a new Malawi for all, and that there is no way they would break their campaign promises willy nilly at the watch of all Malawians!

Namiwa has since asked Chakwera to discipline the overzealous Mkandawire as proof that he is not party to this scheme to frustrate the Vice Presidency.

On the other hand, the Chancellor College-based political analyst, Ernest Thindwa, said the remarks have the potential to bring divisions in the Tonse Alliance.

Thindwa said he finds Mkandawire’s remarks as demeaning the Office of the State Vice President; and, eventually defeating the much-touted Tonse Alliance philosophy.

But MCP spokesperson, Reverend Maurice Munthali, has downplayed the criticisms; justifying that the remarks have only come as parties prepare for by-elections in Karonga Central Constituency.

But Kelvin Thawale, an MCP diehard follower, has condemned Mkandawire for the remarks, stressing they do not augur well with the Tonse philosophy.

 

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Prophet Justice
Prophet Justice
9 months ago

Who is not politicizing these loans? Tell me who is innocent! Nobody, not even one contrary to what the Writer wants us to believe.

This other day UTM youths up north were in a so called business training and media was awash of positivity about it. If UTM is not politicizing, why did it’s youth wing do this? If the intention was good why not train all youths irrespective of party or no party affiliation? Osatinamizapo apa! Don’t disguise and pretend to be an angel when you are equally a devil masquerading as a holy angel

Muhariwa
Muhariwa
9 months ago

What would like to mention here is that Mr Harry Mkandawire’s speech was not of unity. Malawians note that we equally voted Dpp out of power and we should work accordingly. Medf loans should not separate us at all. First priority should be MCP & UTM because other parties like Dpp& Udf had already been given their loans. Chilima did not go wrong to accept his current position though him is also himself. Chakwera and Chilima do all things together and leave those people talking rubbish. Tonse Alliance though is not available at the Registrar’s office that is not an… Read more »

Mpakateni
9 months ago

This is not surprising. You can see how busy Mia is buying Independent MPs and other other parties. To him that is the performance that Chakwera talks about. He still feels Chilima doesn’t deserve to be the VP, so he is preparing the ground for 2025 to replace Chilima. He wants numbers so MCP can go it alone in the next election. I expected the regional Governors to woo MPs, but not a Minister and let alone a VP of a political party. These people must now retire because they have nothing new to offer to Malawi. They are still… Read more »

Parallel Market
Parallel Market
9 months ago

Harry Mkandawire is right. MCP is ruling. MCP was on the ballot paper. Forget about Tonse Alliance. It does not exist in Malawi. Go and check at the Registra of Political Parties, kulibe Tonse Alliance Party kumeneko. It is just an illusion of desparados for power. Take it from me; there is no Tonse Alliance now. It is not a registered political movement. It doesn’t exist on paper. It was a gentleman’s agreement then between political party leaders. Kaya musova!!!

Zude
Zude
9 months ago

MCP,chipani cha zitsiru.

Medson
Medson
9 months ago

Let’s nyenkhwe begins

Neserare Noiz
Neserare Noiz
9 months ago

I am even suprised that a day later and Chakwera has said nothing. This simply means it was all planned. Those words did not just come out by accedent. Koma a MCP mukamatumbwa muziganizila mau awa amene ananena PRESIDENT CHILIMA:” kodi mumgwilizanomo tikagwilizanamoooo?” “Ine ndimaganiza bhoo, ndipo apapa ndaganiza bhoo.” Chifukwatu, just like this time around, the key for the next election are in Chilima’s pocket, mufune, musafune

Medson
Medson
9 months ago
Reply to  Neserare Noiz

MCP full of cheat
Remember quarter system will be back watch coming examination selection of standard 8 and form 4
Only MCP supporters will have a chance.

FEW GOOD MEN
FEW GOOD MEN
9 months ago

“Some Things Will Never Change” By Late 2Pack

Moses Jimmy
Moses Jimmy
9 months ago

Anzathu achitumbuka zili mmagazi. Tsankho si la ku chipani kokha. Vuto ndi kochokela.

Medson
Medson
9 months ago
Reply to  Moses Jimmy

Its not only Tumbuka achewa ndi anthu asankho kwabasi.

Gute
Gute
9 months ago
Reply to  Moses Jimmy

Wayowoya uheni

Zio ine
Zio ine
9 months ago

Cry not Chilima is reaping his dues because of greed and over ambition. We told Chilima that he has placed himself in the pool of crocodiles and they will devour him with bones. Next cabinet will tell it all. The problem Chilima does not want to disclose contents of the agreement that they signed in Lilongwe. If there is division that will be created in the alliance the people are Mia, Nkandawire, Maurice Munthali and Nkaka. Chilima was only needed for the project to enter into government and MCP no longer need him..in 2025 Chakwera will stand with Mia and… Read more »

Dambolangalu
Dambolangalu
9 months ago
Reply to  Zio ine

Nothing wrong with what you are saying,these are your ideas.Malawians can not buy such ideas. I rest my case

Mathanyula
9 months ago
Reply to  Dambolangalu

And such sentiments can only be voiced by people who do not wish Tonse gvt well.

Kay
Kay
9 months ago
Reply to  Zio ine

Actually 2025 this MCP will work with the DPP to stay in power. Na mmene zikuwonekeratu. I pray not

Muhariwa
Muhariwa
9 months ago
Reply to  Zio ine

I dont think that you are telling the Public all the truth. There is no way Mia can stand as vice president to Chakwera. If anything when Chakwera retires and after Chilima takes over then its up to him to select Mia as deputy running mate. Chilima remains very important figure and truly he should not be in hurry.I, for one supported both of them Chakwera and Chilima that is Tonse Alliance for a change. When Chilima takes over never give back to those thieving people.

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