Oppostion leader tears apart Sona: Nankhumwa says Chakwera chose to hide behind less definable Hi-5 agenda

Leader of Opposition in Parliament Kondwani Nankhumwa on Monday presented a statement in Parliament in response to the State of Nation Address (SONA) that President Lazarus Chakwera presented on Friday, commending  the President for recently touring the Area 18 interchange project, which is a brainchild of former president Peter Mutharika under the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) regime.

Leader of opposition Nankhumwa: President Chakwera chose to hide behind less definable Hi-5 agenda

Nankhumwa also commended some of Chakwera’s Cabinet Ministers who in the past weeks took their time of inspecting some projects initiated by the previous DPP Government.

“That was an indication that the new leader and his administration recognizes the huge contribution that the former president and DPP government made towards the country’s social and economic development,” said Nankhumwa

He said DPP has given Chakwera administration a ‘starter-pack for development’.

Nankhumwa informed Parliament that what President Chakwera delivered was not a true reflection of state of the nation.

“A true state of the nation today millions of Malawians are facing hunger as they cannot afford three meals a day, a bag of fertilizer is still at K23, 000 and all maize, tobacco, tea, coffee farmers are waiting for the day government shall fulfil its promise of K4995 Kwacha universal fertilizer subsidy, millions of our youths remain jobless despite being promised immediate 1 million jobs, passports are acquired at exhorbitant price not the promised K14,000 Kwacha, Malawians are still paying for water and electricity connection against the Tonse Alliance promise to scrape off the fees and that Malawi has not yet reached a point of equal opportunities for everyone but for a selected few,” he said.

He advised President Chakwera to promote peace and unity among Malawians.

Nankhumwa pointed out that Sona  is  a constitutional provision and an important annual tradition, and that ut must at least address a number of important elements – inlcuding the state of our democracy; the state of our economy and the service delivery.

“All these above elements were included in the SONA, but as they say, the devil is always in the detail,” he said.

Nankhumwa said as the first SONA for a first-time Head of State, the expectations of Malawians were very high.

“Malawians expected a comprehensive articulation of a roadmap of how this government would implement its vision and a development blueprint that we have heard so much about over the past couple of months. Instead, what Malawians got was merely a blank page where substance was relegated to the backseat,” said Nankhumwa.

He said President  Chakwera did not do any justice to Malawians by pledging to construct official houses for Members of Parliament (MPs) especially considering that MPs are wealthier than many civil servants.

“Most of civil servants including teachers, nurses, police and army officers, social welfare officers and agriculture extension workers, among others live in dilapidated houses. This is an insult to poor Malawians. Indeed, a constituency office equipped with the necessary operational tools would have been appropriate,” said Nankhumwa.

The opposition leader observed that the zeal, dedication and tenacity with which President Lazarus Chakwera and his team displayed in campaigning for the presidency were impressive.

“However,  they say he who drags a goat to the market also finds himself at the market. It is a naked fact that the June 23 polls left this country with a bitter after-taste and divided the nation along tribal and regional lines,” he said.

Nankhumwa said the opposition commend the government for highlighting an agenda of unity through the newly-created Ministry of Civic Education and National Unity.

“It is also important that such policy projection is matched by actions on the ground to indicate seriousness. Malawians are expecting to see how this peace and unity initiative will heal the wounds of victims of MCP 30-year atrocities.

“Malawians will be expecting to see how victims of political demonstrations in 2019 will be taken care of, especially in form of compensation for those that lost property and lives of dear ones,” he said.

Nankhumwa cited the death of Superintendent Usiman Imedi who was killed in the line of duty at Nsundwe in Lilongwe.

He said that although others may argue that “ you cannot judge a government that has just been in office for three months, I am saying it is possible to know the character of a government from its actions on its first day in office.”

Opposition leader pointed out that over the last three months that the Chakwera-led government has been in place, Malawians have seen  “policy ambiguities and lack of decision-making.”

He said: “ We have seen doublespeak; within the last three months, we have seen arbitrary and politically motivated arrests.

“Within the last three months, regionalism and cronyism have reared their ugly head where husbands, sisters, wives and brothers have been appointed into cabinet.”

He said the Chakwera administration  has displayed  a sort of political power-play that would most certainly end in a leadership disaster of unparalleled proportion for his government.

“This transition period is a watershed moment for this country and we need an above-board leadership that must prioritize unity. The first thing that the President should have done was to take deliberate action to unite the country after an election that was bitterly fought on regional lines, not to allow his cheerleaders to foment divisions,” he advised.

“The President should borrow from the popular parlance of Father and Founder of Malawi Congress Party (MCP), the late Dr. Hastings Kamuzu Banda, who said there is no Chewa; no Tumbuka; no Sena, no Yao; no Ngonde: no Nyakyusa; no Lhomwe; and no Mang’anja and that we are all Malawians. Former President Dr. Bakili Muluzi also pursued a Malawi-for-all policy, which saw the appointment of late Right Honourable Dr. Chakufwa Thom Chihana of opposition AFORD as Second Vice President and Minister of Agriculture,” he said.

He encouraged  Chakwera to exercise caution in his quest to “clear the rubble,” saying the President must search for Nelson Mandela in him and reach out to his perceived enemies for the sake of unity and development.

“This is not a call for the government to stop seeking justice by not arresting those who clearly did wrong. No. The wheels of justice must surely continue to turn but we have a problem when the arrests are politically motivated and made purely based on excitement, and targeted only at members of the DPP. Justice must not be discriminatory,” said Nankhumwa.

He continued: “We can master any level of flowery language full of statistics and ambitious economic projections but if we fail on unity as leaders we have failed.

“This is a free lesson this government must learn at this very early stage. If it strongly feels that the DPP failed to unite the country, the right thing to do is not to foment further divisions. Is there not a saying that two wrongs don’t make a right?”

Nankhumwa said typical of new governments, there is always excitement like a young boy who is just learning how to whistle and urged the President not to fall in this trap because Malawians have high expectations.

“Malawians are waiting for the continuation of cement and malata subsidy, construction of classrooms and teachers’ houses, elimination of power and water connection fees and financial support to the elderly, among others.

“Indeed, Malawians businesses are waiting to enjoy a duty-free week; they are waiting for free electricity and water connection; our youths want to be among the one million people to be employed in the first 12 months of this government, and we have already done three months. Madam Speaker, This is what got the Tonse Alliance government elected on June 23.”

Nankhumwa said  t the SONA failed to boldly define a comprehensive road-map, let alone timelines of how Chakwera promises would be implemented.

“Instead, the President chose to hide behind less definable Hi-5 agenda, such as prospering together and subtly throwing the responsibility of ending poverty in this country back to Malawians.

“We are, therefore, left to wonder whether this is a Tonse Alliance government or just an MCP government. You can see, therefore, that there is no time for Mr. President to put two feet on the table, two hands at the back of his head and to just roll with the season because the honeymoon is already over.”

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Shady
9 months ago

I salute you Honorable Nankumwa I will not wonder why when you will be elected next DPP President your up stairs is intact,I hope that Mr president is going to take note on your speech.

Ndata Boy
9 months ago

Just heard that someone entered the chamber with a pistol, who is that one???

Ngoni
Ngoni
9 months ago

I may not entirely agree with everything Nankhumwa said but at least I expected to hear how government will start creating the I million jobs say, by employing at least 20,000 civil servants for starters and give a road map of how we will reach the universal subsidy target. It may not all be done in a year but at least it has to start somewhere.what I see is a government that clueless as to how they are going to to fulfill the campaign promises which were largely based on ignorance of how a government is run. I sympathize with… Read more »

Mangochi Kabwafu
Mangochi Kabwafu
9 months ago

Oops! Paja kuli opposition leader called nankhumwa, n’nayiwala. Kodi nde mukuti amatinso chani bulutuyu? Kodi abale, gogo yiri bwanji ku Mangochi?

Last edited 9 months ago by Mangochi Kabwafu
laws
laws
9 months ago

do we have a president or an Inspector General? day in day out what we hear are arrests,talk-talk and no action on the ground

Sand
Sand
9 months ago

Yes Nankhumwa, I am not a politician but what you have explained here Mr. Chakwera & the vee must take note on it.
We see empty promises now. Many youths & with what we were promised, the losing hope in Tonse is growing fast.

Neserare Noiz
Neserare Noiz
9 months ago

Wow, this Nankhumwa guy is really very articulate. His is not only opposing but offering better solutions. Nde paja ukangonena choncho ukumakhala cadet even kuti munthu ndiwaTonse. i kaya

Nsanje port
Nsanje port
9 months ago

Tonse alliance has betrayed Malawi, this is plain truth, you are good at promises but very poor at fulfilling your promises

Atokwene
Atokwene
9 months ago

Well done Nankhumwa. Please teach Lazaro. He should not think like he is in church at Assemblies of God in Lilongwe. He is running a government of Malawi and we expect policy directions from him giving a roadmap of where we are moving as country. Lazaro SONA speech was as boring as himself and Saulosi. People who got into governemnt through backdoor using the courts. You cheated many malawians that you will give us fertilizer wochipa lero mwasintha mukuti targetted inputs to 4.5m people . Tsono nanga enafe?? after three months nothing is showing kuti kuli boma. Nothing has moved… Read more »

Okay
Okay
9 months ago

Tonse vandals raised the bar too high which every president will fail to pass starting with their own chakwera. Everytime chakwera falls short of achieving any of his goals.

Its clear president talk talk over promises the crowd and now he is seen those promises can’t be achieved. Prices for registration of business have gone up 1000%, they have brought new taxes on pension administration fees, universal subsidy is out of the window, cronyism and regionalism are now official policy for government. Soon this government will be facing mother of all demos

Agenda Setting Theory
Agenda Setting Theory
9 months ago
Reply to  Okay

You voted DPP. Tonse promises were not for you

Neserare Noiz
Neserare Noiz
9 months ago

Iwe, ine ndinavota Tonse, just because Chilima was there otherwise, it was so evident from the very begining that this Chakwela guy is just another idiot who even up to now does not believe that he is president. His intentions can be seen a mile away. He is not here to lead. Nde tikamangowombela mmanja bullshit just because we voted for him, then do not be surprised when you notice five years from now that nothing has changed. Amandinvetsa kuwawa voti yanga uyu, he is not even trying.

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