Removal of Malawi army commander ‘politically motivated’ – Analyst

President Peter Mutharika’s  removal of  Commander of the Malawi Defence Force (MDF) General Vincent Nundwe from his post has  triggered reaction from commentators with governance expert saying it is politically motivate in the wake of forthcoming fresh elections.

Munthali: It doesn’t require one to be a political scientist to appreciate the fact that the decision is largely politically motivated

Muthatika on Tuesday replaced Nundwe  with Major General Peter Andrew Lapken Namathanga without providing an explanation.

Office of President and Cabinet (OPC) said in a statement that Nundwe and  his former deputy responsible for operations Lieutenant General Clement Namangale  will be” assigned other duties in the Public Service”.

In an interview with Nyasa Times, social and governance commentator Makhumbo Munthali said the move to replace Nundwe is politically inspired.

“Definitely there may be technical reasons to justify such replacements but it doesn’t require one to be a political scientist to appreciate the fact that the decision is largely politically motivated,” Munthali said.

“The events that have characterised the country for the past 8 months where the Army  won the hearts of many locally and internationally by acting professionally in their handling of demonstrations  is the main reason why Nundwe has been fired,” he suggested.

The governance experts said Nundwe in this regard is being punished for failure to take political rally orders from the President on using force against protesters

“Looking at the current political context Mutharika may not be looking for  a professional commander of Nundwe’s calibre but rather someone who would play a partisan card in favour of the ruling party especially when dealing with any potential demonstrations.

“Besides, the decision also signals insecurity on the part of the President where he would want to have someone he thinks can protect him in the context of his dwindling public trust levels,” said Munthali.

However, the governance expert said from experience and history the  Malawi army has proved not to be an easy institution to be politically infiltrated  even if those appointed as Commanders have been appointed with the objective of pursuing narrow political interests.

“Memories are still afresh of how General  Henry Odillo despite being appointed by Bingu wa  Mutharika rose to the occasion to defend the Constitution when it mattered most

“In short, the Army has over the years demonstrated to be above one individual by sticking to professionalism, and it would be naive for Mutharika to expect that by replacing Nundwe with a seemingly favourable General to him would automatically stiffle the professional operations of the Army. This might backfire as the Army has a legacy to protect,” he continued.

The Malawian army has played a crucial role during times of political and social turbulence.

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Boma lenileni
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Boma lenileni

.. Just feeling sorry for General Nundwe, being strike twice , mwana wake anamuphera for working in organisation that was presumed to have printed extra ballot papers and he is also being removed for being a professional soldier… pa Nyasalande pano.. nkhanga zawona

Moyenda
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Moyenda

The analyst is a tumbuka and no wonder he is defending his fellow home boy. Nundwe was more sympathetic to Mtambo and his fellow terrorist than those whose properties were destroyed.

In the broader picture, he was more pro opposition than govt so the president is very right to replace him

Citizen Number 1
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Citizen Number 1

Chitolerapapo, So you wanted Nundwe to be carrying out all evil orders from Mutharika? Note that among all the people under APM, there are others who fear God and are ready to do His will, not a selfish man’s wishes. Nundwe is not like Dausi, despite having all the weapons at his disposal, he chose to obey God, just like Balaam. Please read Numbers 22, the whole chapter, but I draw your attention to verses 9 -12, then 14-19 & 22. Despite all the tactics APM is using, God is in control and ready to save us from Mutharika’s cruel… Read more »

Simple
Guest
Simple

Nundwe yo tu zake zinayela kale was there in military service before your tippex president came into power, not was he employeed by Peter in military no, he went to school trained in military service, was capable of his job.If he retired will get his pension as pensioner every month s till his death, will never go begging in the streets neither his wife and children. Has been there before your appointed by tippex president Peter. He never asked Peter that rank meaning was capable of what trained and orders of the constitutional law whether Army or Malawi.

Steve
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Steve

Hold on the people of Malawi you don’t need to worry, the incumbent is now history its a matter of a few months there will be a new Commander In chief.

Fake Petros
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Fake Petros

Africa has had real strongmen, ma presidents oti akayankhula dziko limajejemela, even azungu amaopa APM does not even come close to that. He can only be another loser and go down in history as one president who tried and pretended to be strong and miserably failed.

Chitolerapapo
Guest
Chitolerapapo

Normally thus what happens when an employee disobeys his boss. Politics aside the commander reports and takes orders from the sitting president. But when the commander starts talking orders from opposition and civil societies, finally he ends up in dust bin

Simple
Guest
Simple

Nundwe went to school and trained in Army he knows he’s job can never be interfered, he’s not bothering at all and will manage to live his normal life .was never employeed by tippex present came when nundwe was already in military service and tippex present will leave living nundwe In his position a defensive military what a shit are you talking about his boss. In fact did he told you that he’s sorry for leaving the position, his not greedy like your tippex present and Jane Ansah/ MEC whom are worrying to live since both there targets is to… Read more »

Kiki
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Kiki

Nundwe did not know his job. He protected thieves and lotters. He turned the army into an opposition paramilitary wing.

Raza lush
Guest

Which school are you talking about? My brother, sister, my uncle, my friends and more are there. The same school.. Mbuzi iwe ukuona ngati usilikali ili ndi school yapadela kuti tikanjenjemele

Tambo
Guest
Tambo

Arny is mostly used by dictators to kill the demostrators or civilians only.the Malawi army they acted professional.because they acted very neutral and professional.normal if there internal confusion they use police not army no.dont give arny commanders of Malawi a trouble courser no no no.let me tell you ladies and gentlemen.army is used when there is a problem with other countries yes you can use army not against your own people who doesnt a guns no.mutharika and his mob of mec they made their shit of cheating votes now the court had decided to nullfy the votes.now they blame the… Read more »

joseph
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joseph

MALAWIANS SUPPORT THE LIGHT NOT THE DARK, THE DARKNESS WILL BE OVER-COMED BY LIGHT SOON.AMEN

tman
Guest

mukamva nyekhwe ndiiimeneyo,muyisova,welcm New IG

Simple
Guest
Simple

Mpoto si tumbuka my friend, lomwe si Malawi Yao si Sena. M’mang’anja si ngoni si mchewa . Mtonga si mngoni si mtumbuka si mnkhonde si mlambia si msuku . Tumbuka ndi mtundu mpoto ndi Dera pakati ndi kumwera onse ndi a Malawi. President sangachoje Madera onse kapena maboma ndi mitundu yonse . If they are fighting for their rights let them do so neither lhomwe or Yao in Malawi’s history anamenyera ufulu they know what they are doing will realise that in future zitayela mudzadyelela poti Iwo amamenyela inu kudyelela. Freedom is coming tomorrow will never give up viva Malawi… Read more »

VP Wamuyaya chilima
Guest

Atumbuka mwalephera ntchito. Look now Lilongwe and Mzuzu are in ruins because of your sleepy nundwe. Mtambo would smash anything that comes his way and yet left scot free and unaccountable just because mtumbo is a fellow tumbuka to nundwe. Shupiti zanu atumbuka, nundwe waonongetsa Malawi.

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