Leader of Opposition in Parliament Kondwani Nankhumwa has condemned President Lazarus Chakwera for appointing his own relatives, friends and cronies to serve in foreign missions without regard to merit and qualifications.
Nankhumwa made the remarks in Parliament at the at the end of the 2021/2022 budget session.
He said the diplomatic appointments Chakwera has made are against the president’s own pledge to clear the rubble of nepotism and favouritism when he came into office.
“When one looks at the list of diplomats that have been appointed by President Chakwera to serve in the various Malawi Government foreign missions, it is clear that almost everyone on the list is connected either through family ties or political ties to the appointing authority. This only confirms that the President and his Tonse Alliance government are practicing nepotism.
“I wish to ask the President to walk his talk on clearing the rubble. I wish to remind him that he said he would ensure that this country belongs to all Malawians without regard to political affiliation, tribe, region, religion or race; Malawi wokomela tonse!” said Nankhumwa.
He also faulted the president for sending judges to foreign missions, arguing that the move is a threat to the independence of the Judiciary.
According to Nankhumwa, appointing Judges to serve in foreign missions will also negatively impact on operations of the Judiciary.
“Already, there are not enough Judges compared with the workload. The backlog of cases within our court system has reached a crisis level and appointing Judges as Ambassadors and High Commissioners denies Malawians the right to fair trial,” he said.
Nankhumwa further noted that Chakwera, on his inauguration, promised Malawians that his government would empower and free up governance and oversight institutions.
According to the Leader of Opposition, what has been seen so far so far is increased political interference and pressure on these institutions to tow the government line.
He said: “Toxic political interference is also evident in the manner that CEOs and Directors General of some of these institutions are hired. It is obvious that these people are put in those positions to serve the interests of the President and his Malawi Congress Party and not the people of Malawi.”