The Centre for Democracy and Economic Development Initiatives (CDEDI) has called on President Lazarus Chakwera to go beyond speeches and start delivering on the Tonse Alliance’s campaign promises.
CDEDI Executive Director Sylvester Namiwa made the remarks at a press briefing today.
According to Namiwa, Malawians are anxiously waiting to see the Tonse Alliance delivering on its campaign promises made in the run up to the June 23, 2020 Fresh Presidential Elections (FPE).
“CDEDI is appealing to President Chakwera to begin to balance up his flowery speeches with actions since his tenure of office shall not be judged by the number of powerful speeches delivered, but rather whether Malawi has moved up the poverty ladder or not,” he said.
The activist said Chakwera should use his government’s first national budget as a jumpstart towards delivering his administration’s campaign promises.
According to Namiwa, Malawians are expecting the 2020/2021 national budget to include Universal Fertilizer Subsidy programme for all Malawians and not the targeted farm input programme which was unveiled in the provisional budget.
He further demanded action on the one million jobs which the Tonse Alliance said were achievable during their first year in government
Namiwa also mentioned promises such as the increase in tax threshold band from MK35, 000 to MK100 thousand; the MK15, 000 monthly stipends for the senior citizens aged 65 and above; Free water and Electricity connection; one-week tax holiday; and reduction of passport charges from MK90 thousand to MK14 thousand.
“These are but just a few examples that have been extracted from the Tonse Alliance manifesto.
“The voters are waiting with baited breath to hear the kind of roadmap that has been put in place in order to achieve the much touted new Malawi for all,” he said.
Namiwa noted during the press briefing that Chakwera will deliver his inaugural State of the Nation Address (Sona) next month.
He said his organisation wants to hear plans on Chakwera’s promise to abolish some laws and regulations that continue to oppress the very same people they were supposed to protect. He gave the example of the Pension Act Section 64 and 65 which he said need to be reviewed;
Namiwa added that Chakwera should reveal steps which are being taken to engage Parliament and the Malawi Law Commission in a bid to reduce presidential powers as well as the promised empowerment of the office of the Vice President.