President Dr. Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera and his Vice, Dr. Saulosi Klaus Chilima pledged to Malawians in their campaign trail that once voted into power, they will end nepotism which blanketed the previous leaders.
Many voters from both the DPP and Tonse Alliance were attracted by the song of the two leaders on the podium, “Malawi Watsopano Wokomela Tonse” . They thought that the Tonse Alliancewill be making will be a complete departure from what the DPP did, but it seems that the errors of the DPP Government have been rubberstamped by the Tonse Alliance Government.
President Dr. Chakwera first had a litmus test when Malawians criticized him for appointing family members, friends and financiers of his party and relatives of relatives into his cabinet in July 2020, as out of the 32-member cabinet 18 were from Lilongwe alone.
The appointment of parastatal board members was another disaster where Dr. Chakwera was also criticized for repeating the same mistake he had made during the appointment of members to his cabinet, relatives of relatives were appointed and these people started recruiting own relatives of relatives to the dismay of Malawians, who started questioning if this was what they meant by Malawi wokomela wonse?
There have been calls by many Malawians asking President Dr. Chakwera to reshuffle his cabinet and appoint new faces, but this is yet to be heeded.
President Dr. Chakwera’s daughter, Violet Chakwera-Mwasinga, is among the 40 people appointed to serve as Malawi’s diplomat* to Brussels, Belgium and on the other hand, Vice President’s mother-in-law, was appointed to serve as a diplomat for Malawi in Lusaka, Zambia on the basis that they have qualifications to back them for those appointments.
One social media commentator, Onjezani Kenani, has written on his Facebookbook page that at the podium, they took turns accusing former President Professor Peter Mutharika of practicing nepotism, what they meant was nepotism was bad for only as long as those being put into Government positions were not their family members.
Kenani says once they were voted into power, we are now told that it’s not nepotism because the relatives they are appointing have qualifications questioning them that did those people Professor Mutharika appoint not have the so-called qualifications?
“….Professor Peter Mutharika never appointed any son or daughter of his to any taxpayer-funded position, his daughters are lawyers with their own legal firms, he also never appointed any in-law to any taxpayer-funded position, one would have thought he was the worst nepotist that ever walked the earth, why should your nepotism be considered better than Professor Peter Mutharika’s nepotism…?” questions Kenani.
On his part, Idriss Ali Nassah writing on his official Facebook page is reminding President Dr. Chakwera that he must know that Malawi is not his family farm to be employing his relatives.
“…What then happens to qualified people not related to him…?” queries Nassah.
By Vincent Gunde