How MPs abuse CDF

They draw money from the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) and ‘spend’ it on projects that never exist. Sometimes they even point at projects done by donor agencies or non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and falsely proclaim they built them using CDF. When it takes their fancy, they—members of Parliament (MPs) that a Treasury audit says have abused…

US envoy tips Capital City Lions Club

United States of America Ambassador Virginia Palmer has called on charity organisations such as Capital City Lions Club to advance the fight for civic freedoms in the country. She said this last week during the club’s change-over dinner held in Lilongwe. Palmer said Capital City Lions Club, like any other charity organisation, should strive to…

Chakwera appeals for contact and dialogue

Leader of Opposition Lazarus Chakwera has appealed to all Malawians who are paid from tax payers’ purse to always give contact and dialogue a chance so that the country does not suffer the effects of strikes. He was speaking during the closing of the eight weeks’ meeting of Parliament in Lilongwe yesterday. Said Chakwera: “I…

Govt removes VAT on cooking oil

Cooking oil now will no longer be taxed. And water may soon be the next commodity to be tax-free. These are apparent ‘small’ but important developments in Parliament that are justifying Malawians’ celebration of the endorsing of the K1.3 trillion 2017/18 national budget yesterday in Lilongwe. The budget endorsement came after the national fiscal plan…

Mutharika pushes for more aid

  President Peter Mutharika has said out of the 32 percent of official aid European institutions are providing to Africa, Malawi only gets about two percent. The President was speaking yesterday when he delivered a keynote address at the European Development Days (EDD) event in Brussels, Belgium. Mutharika said just like all African countries, Malawi…

DfID funds k236bn cashgate probe

The Department for International Development (DfID) has provided the National Audit Office (NAO) with K500 million to conclude a forensic audit in the K236 billion Cashgate audit, Treasury has confirmed. Auditor General Stephenson Kamphasa told Parliament’s Public Accounts Committee (PAC) last Friday that the audit which stalled due to lack of financial resources is now…

K161bn multi-donor ASWAp—SP ends

The World Bank which three weeks ago announced resumption of general budget support to Malawi disclosed last week the closing date for the Agriculture Sector Wide Approach Support Project (ASWAp-SP). World Bank public relations officer Zeria Banda confirmed the end of the $215.7 million (K161 billion) project, saying it has reached its closing date which…

Budget too ambitious—opposition

The Leader of Opposition in Parliament and Malawi Congress Party president Lazarus Chakwera has described the 2017/18 National Budget unveiled yesterday in Lilongwe as ‘too ambitious’. But diplomats said the 2017/18 fiscal plan was ‘very encouraging’. Minister of Economic Planning and Development Goodall Gondwe said the 2017/18 National Budget seeks to sustain economic gains. He…

2019 election fever grips parties

Although the next presidential and parliamentary elections are two years away, political parties have started rebuilding to increase their chances of winning the 2019 polls. In MCP, the party president Lazarus Chakwera has made several changes in the party’s policy making body—the national executive committee (NEC)—which has brought discontent within the party’s rank and file.…

Opposition MPs want Tembenu to resign

Opposition Malawi Congress Party (MCP) parliamentarians have asked Minister of Justice and Constitutional Affairs Samuel Tembenu to resign for failing to explain to the House  how the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP)-led government is tackling corruption in the country. Lilongwe Msozi South lawmaker Vitus Dzoole-Mwale asked Tembenu to resign on Friday in Parliament after the Justice…

Medicines Board closes 35 drug stores in LL

  The Pharmacy, Medicines and Poisons Board yesterday closed 35 drug stores in Lilongwe for operating without following set standards. The board’s acting registrar, Mphatso Kawaye, said in an interview that as one way of curbing theft of drugs in public hospitals, the board raided several drug stores and premises selling drugs. He said there…

Amnesty blames govts for attacking journalists

  Global human rights defender, Amnesty International (AI), has expressed shock and disappointment over attacks some governments and individuals direct at the media, thereby threatening and diluting press freedom in southern Africa. AI expressed the sentiments in a statement ahead of the commemoration of World Press Freedom Day today (May 3). The release by AI…