Munlo hear this: PP, JB government have vision, key goals

These days PPM publicity secretary Redson Munlo presents himself as a very desperate person. In addition, he sounds very bitter with the People’s Party (PP) and its government.

There is no doubt that he is on a crusade to do all he can, using the gullible newspapers, to pull down the PP-led Government.

Is it not only two days ago that the Reverend Maurice Munthali, Deputy Secretary General of the CCAP, Livingstonia Synod, during interdenominational prayers on July 6, 2012 in Blantyre, said there will be many trying to pull back President Mrs. Joyce Banda as she forges ahead to take Malawians out of their poverty trap? PPM, courtesy of its publicity secretary, Mr Munlo, is one such destructor.

People's Party leader and Head of State: Joyce Banda

About two weeks ago, Munlo alleged that he had information to the effect that PP senior officials are manipulating subsidized fertilizer contracts. Rather than ranting in the newspapers about what he considers evil, Mr. Munlo should just have exposed the culprits. But Mr. Munlo seems has none to expose.

He is at it again. This time round he is quoted by one of the Sunday newspapers as having told at a political gathering recently that Malawians cannot trust the PP-led government because it does not have a clear-cut manifesto. Which Malawians, if one may ask, is Mr. Munlo talking about?

It is obvious that Mr. Munlo is not following developments in this country especially regarding the turning of the corner that the nation has done economically and otherwise. If Mr. Munlo is following the developments, then he has deliberately chosen to be mean with the truth.

Within the 100 days President Joyce Banda has been in office, she has done gargantuan things not only on the economy but also on human rights and other issues.

Bad laws have been repealed. Diplomatic relations with neighbours and other countries have been re-established. Donors are back with Malawi. Talk of Britain, USA, Germany, Australia, IMF and the World Bank, to mention but a few.

All these countries and organizations are queuing to announce the good news to Malawians that they are back with them. Not only is fuel available.

Prices have also started going down. The forex situation is easing. There are no more sugar queues. The list is endless.

This is not happening out of nothing. There is a clear vision, clear goals and a clear strategy being followed and implemented. What is a manifesto if not the vision, goals and strategy that the leaders of the ruling party are not only promising but also following?

President Mrs. Joyce Banda has a clear vision, clear goals and clear strategies. Her key goals are summarized and prioritized below. The good news is that President Banda’s vision is already bearing fruit.

The key goals are:
1) To eradicate poverty by restructuring the economy to achieve economic growth, accelerated job creation, and protection of the vulnerable. 2) To restore the freedom, dignity, and sense of pride of the Malawian people within a decentralized and democratic system to enable Malawi to realize her social, political, and economic potential.
3) To implement a development agenda that enhances opportunities; reduces inequalities; and overcomes poverty through political, social, and economic programs.

Within these key goals President Banda has outlined the following agenda items:

Goal 1: Poverty eradication through economic restructuring.
A) Financial stabilisation: currency devaluation (short term), normalisation of donor relations (short term), foreign exchange inflows (medium term), bank reserves stabilisation (medium term), banking sector reform (long term), commercial liquidity and letters of credit restoration with foreign banks (long term), capital availability for entrepreneurs and farmers (long term)
Private sector promotion: National Dialogue on the Economy (short term); action plan to promote tourism (short term); trade and investment missions abroad (medium/long term), global market preferred access agreements (medium/long term), private investment in ‘drivers of the economy’ sectors (medium/long term), private sector role in Food Import Subsidy Programme (medium term); Small Industry Support Fund (medium term), cash crop production/exports diversification/increase (medium/long term), support for private sector production of genetically modified foods (short/medium term), value added processing production in mining and agriculture (medium/long term), airborne geophysical survey (medium/long term), industry-small business linkages (medium/long term)

C) Public sector reform: budget reform (short term), National Austerity Programme (short/medium term), National Unemployment Survey (short/medium term); border crossing trade facilitation (short/medium term), e-government enhancement (short/medium term), anti-corruption campaign (short/medium/long term), tax and regulatory reform (short/medium term), land registry reform (short/medium term), procurement reform (short/medium term), Parastatal Sector Reform project (short/medium/long term), National Security Policy development (medium term)
(D) Infrastructure investment: fuel supply stabilisation (short term); military participation in infrastructure development (short term); power supply growth through regional agreements, hydro power plant construction, Malawi Rural Electrification Programme, and privately funded Independent Power Producers (medium/long term); regional road and rail construction (medium/long term); Regional Communications Infrastructure Project (medium term) plus rural optic fibre installation (long term)

Goal 2: Democratic restoration of Malawian freedom and dignity
A) Restoration of freedom: legislative repeal of oppressive laws (short/medium term); commissions of inquiry into extra-judicial matters (short/medium term); strengthening of Office of the Ombudsman, Malawi Human Rights Commission, Law Commission, and Malawi Electoral Commission (short/medium term); preparations for tripartite elections (long term); additional radio/TV/Wi-max licenses (medium/long term)
Restoration of dignity: national flag revision (short term), disability bill enactment (short term), construction/renovation of stadiums (long term), expanded military participation in UN peacekeeping (short term)

Goal 3: Development Agenda Implementation
A) Opportunity Enhancement: business incubators programme to train women and youths (medium term), university admissions quota system abolition (short term), establishment of new public universities and public/private university partnerships (long term), construction of 4 teacher training colleges (long term), expansion of student bursaries (medium term), recruitment of 10,360 student teachers (medium term), primary/secondary school construction (long term), free broadband access for universities/research institutes (medium term)

Inequality Reduction: Increased female employment in all economic sectors (short term), continuation of entrepreneurial/livelihood skills training for youth (short term), agricultural growth cluster training for women farmers (medium term)
C) Poverty Eradication: Presidential Initiative on Poverty and Hunger (short term), Water Board Management and Urban Sanitation Services reform (short term), Green Belt Initiative irrigation project (short term), National Water Development Programme implementation (short term), Commission on Traditional Authorities (short term), maternal/child health initiatives (short/medium term), expectant mothers’ shelters construction (medium term), 5 million mosquito net distribution (medium term), HIV/AIDS services intensification (medium term), public sanitation pilot projects in 5 districts (medium term), health centre/hospital/laboratory construction/rehabilitation (long term), Public Health Institute (long term), Early Childhood Development centers expansion (medium/long term).

Now if this is not a manifesto, then what is?

Finally, much as Mr. Munlo is entitled to his opinions, journalistic professionalism demands the Nation on Sunday newspaper, July 8, 2012 edition, should have balanced its story on Mr. Munlo’s unfounded accusations.

It is simple, you just have to seek an official response by those being accused in the equation.

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