President Peter Mutharika has been commended for listening to different views expressed by commentators, politicians and legal experts for the need to have different stakeholders in the Covid-19 committee.
In his state of nation address on Tuesday night, Mutharika announced that his government has with immediate effect restructured the Covi-19 special cabinet committee and renamed it ‘Presidential Taskforce on Coronavirus’.
According to the Malawi leader, the taskforce will among others include leader of opposition Robin Lowe of main opposition Malawi Congress Party and other representatives of different organs such as chiefs’ council, civil society organisations, medical experts, academia and others.
“Lastly, I direct government to restructure what we have so far called cabinet committee on Coronavirus. From now it will be called the Presidential Taskforce on Coronavirus. This Taskforce will be co-chaired by a cabinet Minister and a professor in public health,” said Mutharika.
Reacting to this development, one of the renowned governance experts Makhumbo Munthali praised President Mutharika for taking the right direction and said the President will now regain Malawians’ trust.
In an interview with Malawi24, Munthali said with the current political situation as the country is going to the fresh presidential polls, this is the best approach which was supposed to be adopted all long.
“It’s a step in the right direction especially when one looks at the backlash the special cabinet committee received from the public and continued calls for such inclusion.
“As I have said several times, the current social-political context especially after the Constitutional Court ruling requires that President Mutharika adopts an all-inclusive approach in his Covid-19 response if the public is to trust him on any steps he takes,” said Munthali.
Munthali has since asked the President to fully utilise the newly instituted Taskforce which according to the first citizen will be reporting directly to him.
Currently, the Coronavirus pandemic has killed three people in Malawi and as of Tuesday 28th April 2020 there were 36 confirmed cases across the country with five who have recovered from the deadly disease.