I am ready to get paycut for ESCOM and my Malawi – Chirwa

A candidate for the Electricity Supply Corporation of Malawi (ESCOM) chief executive officer role, who says he is worth a $500,000 [about K400 million] annual salary, has pledged to take a paycut if given the tole.

Raymond Chirwa said in an interview published by whistleblower Mulotwa Mulotwa.

According to reports, Chirwa passed interviews for the job but the Tonse Alliance administration wants a candidate who came fourth to be given the job.

There have been claims that Chirwa is expensive because he is demanding $300,000 (K240 million) and is not a Malawian national. Chirwa confirmed demanding $300,000 annual salary during the interview but said he is willing to get a paycut.

“I am currently worth $500,000 [K400 million] per annum and reduced to $300,000 because Malawi is my country and even then, I am willing and ready to fit into the Escom salary structure. By the way I was interviewed for two positions, the other one being Chief Operations Officer [ COO] for Escom. So, I am ready to get a pay cut for Malawi, you see,” said Chirwa.

On his nationality, Chirwa confirmed that he holds South African citizenship as his mother is South African but his father is Malawian.

According to Chirwa, he comes from Nkope Village in Mangochi and went to Nkope Primary School in Mangochi from were he was selected to Chaminade Secondary School.

Originally, his father was from Nkhata- Bay but in 1968 trekked to Mangochi to augment his career as a fisherman.

“Father brought us to Malawi in 1968, when I was 2 years old having divorced my mother. I have a Malawian passport that I can renew if required as I left Malawi in 1998 to search for greener pastures and obviously, I had to reconnect with my mother’s roots to get an ID & job.

“Should the Escom CEO job be offered to me I am willing to surrender my South African citizenship if at all the dual nationality law is not operationalised yet in Malawi,” he said.

Chirwa worked for ESCOM early in his career and was involved in building Wovwe Power Station.

He said he wants to lead the electricity supplier to solve the puzzle of power shortages and during the interview e told panel how he was going to go about it.

“They all looked excited with my plans,” he said.

He said: “I have been in this business for the last 31 years and now I want to use my experience to play a role in solving the energy downsides in my country, Malawi.”