No favouritism in appointments, Malawi leader assures at PP’s Mzimba rally

President Joyce Banda has assured the people of Malawi that her People’s Party (PP) administration will ensure that appointments into strategic and top positions in the public service are made based on merit and not on tribal and regional basis.

“Malawi belongs to all of us; no region or tribe should be victimized in any manner and in pursuit of selfish political interests,” the President told thousands of PP supporters at the party’s final campaign rally held at Kapiri Primary School Ground in Mzimba Central Constituency on Saturday, October 6, 2012.

By-elections are scheduled for October 9, 2012 in Mzimba Central and Mzimba South-west constituencies. PP is fielding Aram Wedson Mdala Beza in Mzimba Central and Raymond Nkhata in the other constituency. Owen Mkandawire is challenging Beza on a Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) ticket. In Mzimba South-west, Lonard Chavula is the DPP candidate.

President Banda, Vice President Kachalai and First Gentleman Richard Banda (retired judge) at the campaign rally , Euthini in Mzimba

The President said the people of Northern Region had been sidelined by the three previous regimes in the distribution of strategic public jobs and that the region has also suffered under-development for no apparent reason.

“Northern Region is part of Malawi; why should we discriminate against the people of the North? I wish to assure you that my administration will not look at where people come from before they are given public jobs but qualifications,” said the Head of State, observing that during the immediate past regime (President Bingu wa Mutharika’s DPP), cronies were employed to head almost all strategic public entities.

The President said this malpractice bred corruption as the ‘cronies’ always met “at night” to strategize and connive on how to abuse state resources. She said she had discovered that there had been serious looting of government resources during the previous regime owing to such ‘connections’.

“So, what I have done is that whoever was responsible for the looting and abuse should be brought to book. I will not look at the tribe they belong to; if you are a Tonga and you stole government money, you will be arrested. I have ordered the investigating agencies to zero in on the alleged culprits,” she said.

On the by-elections, Banda said it would be naïve for people of the North to vote for a political party that was responsible for the murder of 20 Malawians, most of them in Mzuzu, on July 20, 2011 as they staged peaceful demonstrations. She was referring to the DPP which was the governing party that time under the late dictator Bingu wa Mutharika.

“I therefore urge you to vote for Beza, the PP candidate. It will send a clearer message to the world that northerners are not ready to welcome back people that governed this country with untold impunity and an iron fist. Beza and the People’s Party represent rapid development for Mzimba Central,” said the Malawi leader.

She also reiterated her “deepest” resolve to continue to respect the role traditional chiefs’ play in complementing government’s development efforts. The President said it follows therefore that she would continue to consult chiefs on various national development plans.

“Should I be travelling abroad, I will include chiefs on my entourages as they are better placed to articulate the social challenges their subjects encounter. About 85 percent of Malawians live in the rural areas and it would be naïve on my part to ignore the chiefs who are the leaders at the grassroots,” said Banda.

Other speakers were Vice President Khumbo Kachali, PP campaign leader in the constituency Ralph Kasambara, Senior Chief Mtwalo, PP provincial leader for the North, Reverend Brown Soko and the candidate, Beza.

PP supporters in Mzimba at President Joyce Banda’s campaign rally
Orange crowds at Euthini in Mzimba

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