Malawi President Joyce Banda has made a complete reshuffle of presidential aides team at State House purging loyalists of the late leader Bingu wa Mutharika but government will have to pay some of them millions for terminating their contracts .
Fired so far include Presidential aides on Religious Affairs Rev, Billy Gama, on Women Affairs Margaret Chiponda, Civil Society Bessie Chirambo, State House press officer Albert Mungomo, presidential spokesperson Hetherwick Ntaba, director of State Residences Edward Sawerengela and legal counsel Allan Ntata.
They have all received their letters terminating their services.
“I have received my letter of termination of my contract at State House,” Ntaba confirmed.
“It was a privilege to the Head of State and my country,” he added, sounding low.
However, Malawians will have to dig deeper into their pockets to pay the casualties who are fired before the expiry of their contracts.
After assuming office as President, Banda is continuously firing people who were appointed by her predecessor and so far 26 presidential aides have been fired, almost all of them before the
expiry of their contracts.
Others fired so far are Principal Secretary for Treasury Joseph Mwanamvekha, head of intelligence Bintony Kutsaira who is replaced by former Army commander Marko Chidziko according to government sources. Kutsaira has been sent to the Ministry of Agriculture.
Mutharika’s wife Callista was also fired for the post of Safe motherhood national coordinator and was replaced by Dorothy Ngoma. Callista will also receive all Mutharika salaries and pension till 2014.
“Some contracts end next year others in 2014. Government will have to pay all the money till the end of the contracts. This is a tough decision any new administration takes because the belief is that it is better to fire and pay those people who were close to the predecessor than keep them when you are doubting their loyalty,” said an official at the Office of the President and Cabinet.
The OPC official said government will pay millions of Kwacha to the fired people. The source said government has the money to pay off the people.
Sawerengela said he was fired before the expiry of his contract and that government will have to pay his dues till the end of the contract.
Rev. Gama’s contract expires next year in April and government will have to pay him huge sums of money.
Gama confirmed receiving the termination of contract letter but did not say much.
The continuous firing of former president’s appointees keeps sending shivers to the remaining ones as they do not know their fate.
“We are working without being sure of what comes tomorrow,” said one of Mutharika’s appointees.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :