Chakwera is sleeping on duty – Nankhumwa

Leader of Opposition Kondwani Nankhumwa has urged Malawians to vote President Lazarus Chakwera and the Tonse Alliance out of the government out in 2025, saying the Malawi leader is sleeping on duty and has failed to fulfill campaign promises.

In a statement today, Nankhumwa said Chakwera has miserably failed to deliver and Malawi cannot proceed on this socio-economic path.

In the statement, Nankhumwa has faulted Chakwera over the mess in implementation of the Affordable Inputs Program, Cholera outbreak, closure of ADMARC and the controversy over commission of inquiry report on the arrest of Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) chief Martha Chizuma.

On Cholera, Nankhumwa noted that cholera cases were increasing during the dry season which should have been a warning for Chakwera and his Tonse Alliance government to ensure that the health sector in the country has the capacity to deal with the outbreak before the rainy season.

However, according to Nankhumwa, the cholera outbreak was given cursory attention like a small ailment that would go away with regular Panado, and yet it was a time bomb waiting to explode. 

“Now here we are. The cholera outbreak has now clearly exploded, and surprisingly the government looks to have been caught off-guard. Stories of no medical supplies such as intravenous fluids, antibiotics, inadequate medical staff to take care of patients, have become the norm,” he said.

He then repeated his call for Chakwera to declare cholera, which has killed over 700 people since March, a State of National Disaster in order to get support help that is currently not available.

On AIP, Nankhumwa claimed that women are collapsing at AIP fertilizer selling points across the country due to fatigue and hunger after spending days on end with no bag of fertilizer in sight.

He also noted that there have been cases of rioting and youths abducting fertilizer trucks because the little available fertilizer is not nearly enough to meet the demand by farmers across the country.

According to Nankhumwa, money for the AIP was stolen under the guise of purchasing AIP fertilizer and some of this money was paid to a butchery in the UK to purchase fertilizer.

“Today, I demand that President Chakwera should come out in the open and publicly apologize to Malawians, especially the rural smallholder farmers, for the AIP mess this year. Let him publicly admit that poor planning, corruption and theft by some members of his government have resulted in this year’s AIP mess. There is simply no Fertilizer in SFFRFM warehouses and the little fertilizer that may be available cannot get to the targeted farmers because of transport logistics problems,” said Nankhumwa.

The Leader of Opposition has also faulted Chakwera over his promise to appoint a lean cabinet.  

Towards the beginning of 2022, Chakwera announced, without being prompted, that he would “soon” reconfigure his cabinet but did not do that until months later. In his 2023 New Year Message, the President again said he is about to hire a new leaner cabinet in line with his newly discovered aspirations for the country but now, two weeks later, Malawians are still waiting for the lean cabinet.

According to Nankhumwa, it surprising that Chakwera makes promises regarding his cabinet instead of just taking action.

He said: “The issue of the Cabinet has once again exposed President Chakwera’s lack of decisiveness on critical issues, which is one of the reasons why his government has simply imploded without making progress in almost all the sectors of the economy. It also feeds into rumours that President Chakwera is not his own man and that he answers to a very powerful clique of MCP (Malawi Congress Party) ministers who call the shots and control him, and whom he fears to fire.”

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