Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding. Exalt her, and she shall promote thee: she shall bring thee to honour, when thou dost embrace her.–Proverbs 4:7-8
It has only been three weeks since Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) chairperson Justice Chifundo Kachale announced Tonse Alliance candidate President Lazarus Chakwera as winner of the June 23 2020 fresh presidential election. A lot has happened since, including the swearing-in, inaugural address, Cabinet appointments, call to prayer and fasting, and some arrests as part of efforts to clear the rubble. While Chakwera has began his journey with transparency and communicating regularly to citizens, critics have called his actions ironic, among other things. The dust from the celebrations dance, has barely settled.
At times like these, I wish Malawi had a bona fide Professor PLO Lumumba who would come up with adult commentary on the statesmanship of the new President, raising the discussion points beyond the social media hype.
Last week, Chakwera held a highly combative BBC interview and this week he held an audience with Tonse Alliance members of Parliament. I felt the BBC interview was an insult in that the BBC continues to belittle African presidents, despite interviewers being of African origin. Enough on that.
It is notable that government business was a poor mishmash, but the lead servant in the office of President was given a mandate to govern by over two million Malawians. Let Malawians pray the President must not be bullied by elected officials. May they be reminded whose interests they serve. For the information of all concerned Malawians, as President, Chakwera has the constitutional obligation and the prerogative to appoint into the Cabinet any person.
This week, unnamed diplomatic sources from an influential embassy, have calculated that the DPP 2014 to 2020 plunder from government coffers, dubbed economic genocide, could have helped Malawi achieve among others, 8 000 kilometres of dual carriage roads, 132 full primary schools each with 20 modern teachers houses, four international standard hospitals that could have ended the so-called medical tourism to India, 11 000 police houses, 6 500 Malawi Defence Force houses, jobs for 2.7 million people sustained for at least seven years, 900 megawatt solar farm for electricity, six top of the range universities, two international airports, 60 ambulances and 54 full secondary schools.
These would have been for the benefit of a lot more Malawians than the ones that are being revealed. The first to appear in the revelations are abandoned vehicles. However, more interesting than the vehicles are persons implicated in obscene plundering of government money. In a whirlwind operation, police started rounding up suspects in numerous scams ranging from using the President’s duty-free credentials to importing billions of kwacha worth of cements, purchasing of fleet of luxury cars to just plain wanton plunder of government money.
As the arrests continue, so too is government business. But what is remarkable is that in keeping with his deep concern for the pandemic that has led to the alarming rising statistics, President Chakwera has called upon all religiously-inclined citizens of the country to join him in observing three days of fasting and prayer from Thursday to Saturday against the spread and impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Malawians have been invited to join the President on Sunday to observe it as a National Day of Thanksgiving with a vision of creating an opportunity in our homes and religious gatherings throughout the country, to express gratitude to God for the grace He has showered on Malawi.
In conclusion, Malawians are being warned, put on your working or walking shoes, the Tonse Alliance journey to the New Malawi promises to be a fast moving trip, filled with stones being turned in the rubble cleansing, knees will continue to be on the floor. My plea is that we get off the Critique Hill and jump into the train. Be part of the solution, not the problem; there is much to do. Chakwera is the servant; he is not a student.