Mutharika’s award for poverty in Malawi

In this world, there are people who are pretty gifted at seeing what others can’t see. There are also others who, without actually seeing anything, they will pretend to see something. Others are ‘professional blind followers’, good at following blindly even when the one they are following is clearly leading them to a dangerous precipice. Loose cannon

The good of it is that this is entirely not wrong in a fast-paced global marketplace of information and ideas. In fact, everyone is entitled to their opinion and free to choose what to believe. This brings me to the story of the moment.

The UK-based African Leadership Magazine has awarded President Peter Mutharika with what it is calling a ‘Medal of Honour for Development’. The award was bestowed on Mutharika at this year’s United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in the US, from where he is yet to return.

Apparently, the award is a recognition for Mutharika’s efforts to bring “the best of Africa to a global audience” and also for ‘telling the African story from an African perspective’. Sounds pretty prestigious indeed, and as has always been the case, Mutharika’s army of braggadocios is all over town with extensive high sounding words brandishing this ‘outstanding accomplishment’ for their man.

We might not know the criteria that New African Magazine used to arrive at the conclusion that Mutharika is the best among, we don’t know who, at telling the African narrative to the global audience. We may also honestly not be privy as to what African stories the law Professor who spent 40 years outside Africa, has been telling to which global audience.

What we are aware of, however, is that Mutharika is facing enormous challenges running Malawi – a country of 16 million. This country is struggling to mix its economic variables and its future really looks bleak despite promises of economic growth by Mutharika and his kind in the DPP government. Economic experts have just revised down our GDP growth to a paltry 2.9 % from the 5.1% that finance minister Goodall Gondwe predicted when he presented the 2015/16 budget.

Inflation is in the double digits and Interest rates are beyond reach for the majority of members of the private sector. Apart from the severe blackouts that have left this country in perpetual darkness, the latest Transparency International (TI) index reveals that corruption in Malawi is alarmingly high. The sad thing is that Mutharika’s leadership does appear to be offering solutions to this forbidding reality.

Is it not ironical, therefore, for someone to think of honouring a leader who presides over a country under this unfortunate context; a country which is erupting in poverty for lack of visionary leadership? And to add salt to a rotting wound, Mutharika said he is receiving the award on behalf of all Malawians. Malawians my foot!

Can Mutharika contextualize which story Malawians are telling to the rest of the world? Is it a story of poverty and despondency?

The DPP government has been criticized for being insensitive and aloof to the needs of Malawians. The Professor often appears absent and far removed from the rest of the people on national issues, and often cedes control of national matters to cadre of certified rascals operating under the alias of advisors.

Halt the assassination story, Mr. President

In his acceptance speech for the award, Mutharika said he had endured a lot of political persecution and several attempts on his life. Which persecution? It is now well documented that to date Mutharika has not produced any evidence of any attempt on his life by the previous People’s Party (PP) government since this talk of ‘persecution’ started.

It is a fact that Mutharika was arrested because he was part of a franchise that attempted to prevent a constitutional provision from taking its course. It was pure and simple, and no any sugar-coated speech made to ‘global audience’ can change that fact or re-write that history.

Are these the type of stories that have hoodwinked the African Leadership Magazine into honoring Mutharika with the so-called leadership award?

Man gives you the award but God gives you the reward.Denzel Washington

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This is absolutely ridiculous! Or is there something that I’m not seeing? Maybe there is some higher function that Peter is serving that my plebian mind and its concerns are too commonplace to perceive. Whatever it is, I know that it does NOT involve improving the power situation, improving our literacy, increasing jobs, or hell, de-messing up the economy so that we can sustain ourselves. The Europeans can pat him on the back all they want, but he gets nothing but suspicion from me.

HE the Life President Mfuti Kasinja?
HE the Life President Mfuti Kasinja?

Do you know these international guy they dont reward you for achievement, but for making your country worse or more.

Mika Kumbire
Nyasa Times!! You blow the trumpet every time Joyce Banda receives PhDs and Awards from all over the place. The mess the country is in started during the time of Muluzi. I am not an APM fan nor do I support DPP. As for the rest of the parties; it is an issue of the candidate who was never there. The only point I can agree with you on, is that we need to hold hands and map the way forward. It is true that as long as we continue hiring leaders from the same crop of visionless group; Sure… Read more »
M Sizini
The Sigh of Malawi (Slightly adapted from the words of Stephen Collins Foster) Let us pause in life’s pleasures and count its many tears While we all sup sorrow with the poor There’s a song that will linger forever in our ears; Oh, hard times come again no more Chorus It’s the song, The Sigh of Malawi Hard times, hard times come again no more Many years you have lingered Around my humble door Oh, hard times come again no more While we seek mirth and beauty and music light and gay There are poor folks fainting at our door… Read more »
Khuduza Kaluselela
The greater tragedy for Malawi is not the absence of clever and meticulous leaders it’s the absence of enlightened citizens. In Malawi leadership is perceived by citizens from the context of resource sharing. Because leadership will share resources citizens vote into office leaders that come from their regions, tribes and districts. Leaders are not put in office on the basis of their development agendas but on the basis of expectations of benefits at personal level by citizens. So you end up with one leader who ascends to power with any development agenda except to plunder or share national resources with… Read more »
Douglas Ndindi
My fellow Malawians, the award was presented and received. Period. Nothing can change that no matter what we say. It is my belief that whether our HE deserves it or not does not matter at this point in time. What matters is that we hold hands, put our collective heads together (assuming we still have our heads) and brainstorm how to get out of this trap called poverty. Mr President, may I ask you with all the politeness that you deserve that you come back home, keep your award in your “ekisipandi”, draw courage from wherever it is that you… Read more »

If there is one president Malawi has ever had that stinks from all corners, it is the dimwit called APM whose looks even illustrates that all what is in him is stupidity. Another waste of space. He can make one hate their country.


Best comment ever

third Knowles sister

i hate it when people say that Obama is black….seriously there is a name for mixed race people not black…..nelson mandela black, martin luther king black….barack Obama hmmmmmmm may be coloured I don’t know… his mother is pure white. On the issue at hand criteria or no criteria nzamanyazi midima ikumakhala ma plot mu and for some stupid organization to be awarding cartoons with leadership awards angazi……………………


One only wonders how many awards have been given to Obama, if not for poverty then for riches and being a black president in America. Would this not be a greater achievement than that of taking Malawi from a poor country to the poorest country in the world?

Barnaba Sila

This is indeed a great achievement for our nation. I disagree totally with Thom Chiumia on his assessment of APM. I respect azungu when it comes to expressing their feelings of appreciation even to their enemies. One could not imagine that the EU could be the first group to express their appreciation to Bingu on championing food security in Malawi and the rest of Africa at his death when you consider how they often they were at loggerheads in the issues of governance!


These people are clever they only bestow such honours on imbeciles. They cant give such an award to Kagame he is too clever for such silly little jokes. They know that APM has nothing to offer but they also know that he is an attention seeking small minded simpleton. Am told that next APM will be honoured for “defeating Hitler” and he is going to receive on our behalf.

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