The Reserve Back of Malawi Governor, Dalitso Kabambe has said he sympathises with Minister of Finance, Economic Planning and Development Goodall Gondwe for the tasking job of allocating resources for public spending from a ‘very lean government purse’.
According to Kabambe, Gondwe has managed well to allocate the recently passed 2018/19 National Budget which he said in dollar terms can be pegged at $2 billion. The governor said this amount is too little to support the country’s current needs.
“The current budget, if we are to put into per capita it comes down to $100 per capita which would is a nightmare for the minister to spend for the needs of Malawians.”
“This is the lowest budget ever you can find in the world. In the same $100 per capita government has to provide free primary education, has to provide security, free health services and many other things that Malawians need. A $100 per capita spending is simply impossible,” Kabambe said.
He said it is a tough job to be a Minister of Finance in the country because ‘you have to manage all these expectations against very little resources’.
“But you will find out that government is doing all it can with that kind of resources,” he added.
Kabambe further explained that even in then health sector you find that Malawi spends $10 per capita and the development partners add in $30 to make it $40 which is still very low because on average just in the Sadc region the public expenditure is $140 dollars per capita in Malawi but remains at $40 health spending.
Kabambe was recently saying this in reaction to the proposal by the newly elected-president for Rotary Club of Bwaila, Kingsley Mlewa, for his club to start sponsoring tertiary education students who don’t have school fees in spite of them being committed to public universities.
In his words he said that there is always room that other stakeholders can come in to help government out in many areas.
He gave an example of how the education sector needs support, saying that the sector saw the number of children that should have been in school rising from 18 percent all the way to 80 percent the time government introduced free primary education, a development which put Malawi at par with all the countries in the Sadc region. Yet when the 80 percent are in primary school only 19 percent of those that are supposed in secondary school were really in secondary school.