A political analyst has said the newly appointed cabinet serves as a way of solidifying the political alliance between the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) and United Democratic Front (UDF).
On Thursday President Peter Mutharika appointed a new 32-member cabinet.
The new cabinet has seen several new faces from the United Democratic Front that include their leader Atupele Muluzi who is now Minister of Energy, legislator Ismail Mkumba as Deputy Minister of Education, UDF member Clement Chiwaya as Minister of Disability and another UDF legislator Lilian Patel as Minister of Labour.
Reacting to the development, the analyst Wonderful Mkhutche said the new cabinet is too big as Mutharika wanted to accommodate the alliance with UDF as a way of strengthening the one-month old alliance.
Mkhutche said Mutharika has appointed people who could help him strengthen his political base as the country head towards the fresh presidential election as ordered by the Constitutional Court on 3rd February this year.
The analyst further added that Malawians should not expect technical delivery from the newly appointed ministers claiming most of the members of the cabinet are not experts of their ministries.
“It is a bloated cabinet, one that has been made to accommodate new political affiliation with UDF. It has also been made to strengthen the President’s political base as we head towards the fresh election sanctioned by the constitutional Court.
“It will be business as usual. The cabinet is not made up of experts. In short, it has been influenced by politics so we should not expect any kind of technical delivery from it,” said Mkhutche.
He added the only strength is that UDF has been incorporated claiming it was necessary to have UDF in the cabinet as one way of solidifying the alliance.
“It was necessary to have UDF in the cabinet. The president acted quickly on that matter to put into the alliance in practice.”
The analyst, however, said the effectiveness of the inclusion will also depend on the opposition of UTM and MCP since these two have now formed an electoral alliance.
The new cabinet has 23 full ministers (including Mutharika who is Minister of Defence) and nine deputy ministers while the previous cabinet had 18 full ministers and six deputies.
Mutharika has left out Martha Lunji who was Minister of Labour, Bintony Kutsaira who was Minister of Energy and Mungasulwa Mwambande who was Deputy Minister of Natural Resources, Energy and Mining