Mutharika promises not to take whole village to the UN this year

Peter Mutharika
Peter Mutharika
Mutharika not taking chances this time around.

The criticism he wore when he took over 100 people along with him at the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) last year must not been something Malawi President Peter Mutharika would want to place under his coat again this year.

Mutharika fell to incessant criticisms last year when he sent 111 delegates to the United Nations general assembly meeting in New York on the back of an economic meltdown.

He had publicly denied of picking the bloated entourage to the summit days after his return.

But this year, government has indicate it will have a trimmed number of delegates to head to the UNGA slated for 20-30 September at the UN headquarters.

There will be leaders from  more than 190 countries.

But is Malawi picking the ‘entire village’ again this year?

Minister of Foreign Affairs and International cooperation Francis Kasaila, told the media at a briefing today that the American Embassy has been fully advised not to issue visas to anyone to travel to New York for the purposes of UNGA without the authorization of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation.

Kasaila: We have strict measures now.

“We have also issued instructions to all ministries that ministers should not authorize the travel of their officials to UNGA, without the approval of the president, and in light of the measures a lot of requests have been rejected.” said the Minister.

According to Kasaila the serious measures to control the number of people travelling to UNGA is in order to avoid what happened in 2015 where an unreasonable number of people went to attend the UNGA as part of Malawi delegation without the knowledge of the president.

Sharing on Malawi’s prospects at the UNGA, Kasaila said Malawi hoped to yield positive results in terms of aid and investment, sharing the investment opportunity available in Malawi as business people from America and across the globe would also be at the UNGA.

Mutharika leaves Malawi on 15th September.

This year’s United Nations General Assembly will be held under the slogan “Sustainable Development Goals (SDG): a universal push to transform our world”

Last year, country leaders adopted a new development agenda for the SDG until 2030, increasing the number of goals to 17 goals and addressing new items for the first time, like climate changes, life under water, clean energy, and mental health, among other issues.