President Mutharika has clean bill of health – PM

Malawi President Bingu wa Mutharika is in robust health but holidaying in some undisclosed country, his brother Professor Arthur Peter Mutharika has disclosed.

The younger Mutharika, who is also Malawi’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, was speaking to the media on the line from Brazil where he is reported to be official duties.

“The President is on vacation. Whatever is being written is probably just wishful thinking,” said Mutharika, also known in political circles as PM.

Mutharika: In good shape, says brother

He said that President Mutharika has a clean bill of health and that suggesting anything to the contrary will be just wishful thinking.

Professor Mutharika’s version of the story has been collaborated by Director of State Residences Edward Sawerengera who said reports about the State President’s illness are just speculations.

President Mutharika attended the recent Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (Chogm) in Perth, Australia from October 28 to October 29, 2011 but later proceeded on leave.

The Malawi Government has not disclosed the whereabouts of the leader although his official spokesperson Hetherwick Ntaba has said the Malawi leader has made a stopover in some country on his way back home.

Political commentator Rafiq Hajat told The Nation that the absence  of information as to where President Mutharika is spending the holiday may lead  to speculation.

“I think it is essential for transparency to  prevail. The people have a right to know what the President is doing and where  he is doing it. He is a public figure. In the absence of this information you  start speculating that may be his health is not good and that leads to panic and  anxiety which is so unnecessary,” said Hajat.

Mutharika is serving his second and last term of office. He started ruling Malawi in 2004 and expects to hand over power in 2014.

His ruling Democratic Progressive Party has nominated his younger brother Professor Arthur Peter Mutharika as its torch bearer in the 2014 polls that are expected to be hotly contested by other candidates from the opposition.

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