Paramount Chief Ngolongoliwa of Thyolo has said the Public Affairs Committee (PAC) all- inclusive stakeholders’ conferences on “the future of Malawi” have no relevance to the citizenry but University of Malawi political analyst Mustapha Hussein feels PAC conferences remain fundamental platforms for the public.
In comments reported by the press, Ngolongoliwa said he sees no benefit in PAC conferences, arguing it only benefits educated people in town who come together to argue on issues.
Ngolongoliwa said as long as food was available in villages, people are happy.
“There is food all over, people are happy. What PAC discusses or comes up with, doesn’t help villagers out here,” he said in quotes reported by Weekend Nation on Saturday.
His comments comes after rhe quasi-religious body just concluded its highly-emotional Sixth All-Inclusive Stakeholders Conference Thursday in Blantyre with delegates making several recommendations to President Peter Mutharika’s administration.
The paper, however also quoted Mustapha Hussein, a political science lecturer at Chancellor College, a constituent college of the University of Malawi (Unima), feels PAC conferences remain fundamental platforms for the public as they project a common man’s view of how government or democracy is performing.
“These PAC conferences, whether they are liked by some quarters or not are very relevant because they contribute to the discourse on issues relating to our democracy.
“They are an important feature in our democratisation process because they provide a platform for the majority voiceless to appreciate the other side other than that of government,” he said as quoted by the paper.
According to the report, Hussein cited a presentation made by law lecturer Garton Kamchedzera also of Chancellor College on public trust which touched on “sensitive” issues.
He noted: “That really raised eye-brows because it touched on some of the sensitivities and perceptions people have. So the success lies in the messaging and the passing it on to the government.”
But Hussein also stated that failure to implement or follow up on previous resolutions was a source of lessons regarding the strategies that PAC needs to be put in place.