The quasi-religious group Public Affairs Committee (Pac) has strongly condemned President Peter Mutharika and his Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), saying they have performed dismally to tackle socio-economic and political issues since it got elected into power in 2014.
Pac members told a news conference at Mount Soche in Blantyre on Thursday afternoon following their two-day meeting through which they released a statement attacking President Peter Mutharika’s led government on issues that have already been covered in the media, and have extensively been debated and argued about by Malawians on various forums including social media.
During the news conference, PAC said the Mutharika administration lack vision to steer the country into prosperity.
Among the issues Pac raised in its statement are Mutharika’s last year United General Assembly bloated delegation; procurement of maize by Malawi Energy regulatory Authority (Mera); Zambia maize procurement scandal involving fired minister of agriculture, George Chaponda and the Agricultural Development and marketing Corporation (Admarc).
Other issues include the tractor-gate; K577 billion Cashgate; the unsolved murder of the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) official Issa Njaunju, Polytechnic student Robert Chasowa’s murder; Ministry of Health fraud; the Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA) raid on Times Media Group over unpaid taxes, and the purchase of Mutharika’s new presidential vehicle.
In the statement, the organization argued that the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) led government has failed as it is riddled with corruption and fraud and that the Mutharika administration has lost track of its promises.
Pac while calling for a new political and state architecture, it demanded that Chaponda should be taken to task on his role in the maizegate saga though he has already been fired from cabinet and is being investigated by the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) on the same.
Journalists at the news conference took to task the interfaith civil society organization, for being reactive to issues affecting Malawians and questioned its political stand
The media comprised of private owned institutions such as Zodiak, Capital Radio, Nyasa Times, Joy Media Group, The Nation, Times television, Radio Maria, Radio Islam and MIJ Radio queried why it took Pac so long to issue out the statement on the raised issues which have been extensively debated by Malawians including the media, civil society organizations and opposition political parties.
The media also queried Pac’s failure to raise suggestions on the course of action it will take on behalf of Malawians amid reports of divisions within the organization.
Led by its chairperson, Reverend Dr Felix Chingota, Pac failed to convincingly respond to some of the imposed questions by journalists, and rarely attempted to clarify at length reportedly divisions within the grouping, the pull out of some its funders due to its political inclination and claims that it is being influenced by the opposition political parties.
“We are not reactive. As Pac we lived by our mandate to raise these issues. So we are not reactive,” argued Pac’s vice-chairperson, Osman Karim of Quadria Muslim Association of Malawi (QMAM).
“Last year we made some resolutions which we presented to government. By not getting feedback from government up to now, we take it that they appreciated our resolutions.”
Asked about the pulling out of funding by some of its financiers including UNDP, Publicity Secretary, Father Peter Mulomole played down the issue, claiming they were not aware of the pull out.
On opposition shielding and influence, Mulomole said: “Government is the one in-charge of this country. If we need change, our contact dialogue partner is government and not opposition. Government has dismally failed and there is lack of vision to steer this country to prosperity. The opposition is in disarray. They have to put their house in order. Look what is happening in Malawi Congress Party (MCP) for example.”
Father Mulomole could not however rule out that some of its members have political affiliations, arguing “Some of us have political colours and some of us do not.”
Questioned on what criteria it used to determine government’s failure, Reverend Chingota failed to justify their statement instead used Bible and Quran references to back their stand.
Pac is expected to meet in May this year for its All-inclusive Conference where it will come up with resolutions on the issues it raised in the statement issued out on Thursday.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :