President Lazarus Chakwera has commended Malawians living in the United States of America for their contribution to their country during the flood disasters and Covid 19 pandemic.
The President made the remarks on Tuesday in Washington DC when he held discussions with Malawi diaspora living in the city and Canada.
He said: “We may have different political affiliations, we may have different opinions, but we all belong to one nation called Malawi; hence, the need to collaborate and coordinate on development issues for the benefit of Malawians.”
Chakwera asked the diaspora not only to raise questions on what government is doing, but also suggest solutions to the problems rocking the country.
“Let us change our mindset. Even though you live miles away from home, there is need to engage government in agriculture, education, health and energy sectors,” he said.
Malawi Washington Foundation Diaspora Association representative Linda Semu called on government to address issues on expensive visa processing fees, dual citizenship and easy access to Malawi national identity cards.
“When we want to renew our visas and passports, we have to travel to Malawi because the embassy here cannot do that for us. We ask government to consider addressing these issues for us to make positive contribution to our country,” she said.
Minister of Foreign Affairs Nancy Tembo assured the diaspora that Chakwera’s government is ready to iron out all challenges they are facing.
“We need to look at what is required to reopen the embassy in Ottawa in Canada and right now the responsible team at Foreign Affairs has all the details on what to do as offices are already identified,” she said.
Chakwera was engaged in a question and answer meeting attended by over 100 Malawians from across USA and Canada.
Some of the emerging issues focused on land ownership, investment in mega farms, corruption, dual citizenship, visa and passport processing as well as job creation.