Written by Patseni Mauka
President Peter Mutharika’s New Year’s Day message was one of his numerous works of fiction and a show of mastery in hypocrisy. If you read it without knowing who the old and tired professor is, you would think it’s coming from an honest man who has dumped his crooked ways.
Let’s start with the fiction. In his message, Mutharika told Malawians that we can develop this country if we continue on the ‘path we have taken’. He claims that this country has taken the right direction to development. This is pure fiction because it’s only Mutharika and his party who see the ‘right direction’ that the country has taken. Most Malawians see things differently.
In a survey by Afro barometer (2017), 88% of the respondents said they think the country is headed towards the wrong direction. This means Mutharika’s claims are worlds apart from the feelings of the majority of Malawians. With the billions of Kwachas being misappropriated by the DPP regime, it can’t see the wrong direction the country is heading.
Mutharika further said, “Four years ago, our economy was broken. Our country was nearly bankrupt. Businesses were closing.” The truth is that many businesses are still closing and people are losing jobs due to the energy crisis which his government has failed to solve. Companies are scaling down production because of inadequate electricity. This has resulted in enormous losses of revenue to the companies as well as government.
The most outrageous fiction in the address was Mutharika’s claim that in the year that has just ended, we have seen blackouts slowly coming to an end. Only Mutharika and his supporters know which part of Malawi blackouts are coming to an end. Probably their bedrooms. Throughout Malawi, people are still suffering from the effects of the energy crisis. Yet Mutharika chooses to ignore the prevailing blackouts in order to avoid losing political support. He lies in order to gain political mileage.
Mutharika further asserts that when DPP came into power, inflation was high and prices were rising. He says that businesses were failing and poverty was rising as opposed to the current state of the nation. The truth is that the cost of living has gone up by over 50 percent since the DPP won elections in 2014. Poverty has risen and Malawi has moved from sixth to third poorest country in the world. Any other statistics are useless. Nobody can eat single digit inflation. Poor people don’t care about what the IMF says. They care more about their declining purchasing power.
Mutharika says the economy is improving and more Malawians are opening new businesses, building better houses, buying cars more than ever because they have disposable income. This is far from the reality. Only ruling party members, Mutharika’s cronies and tribesmen are building multi-million Kwacha mansions as well as buying fleets of new expensive cars with money from unexplained sources.
Mutharika further says, ‘Today, we can see new roads everywhere.” The new roads that have been built under Peter Mutharika and DPP, are eroding away one or two years after construction. Roads with double lanes that his DPP painted boys are always quick to point as DPP’s achievements are just a few kilometers long and not anywhere near international standards.
The lies and fiction in Mutharika’s New Year’s Day address are so many that if we listed and debunked all, we could write a book. In part two of this article, I will highlight the hypocrisy of Mutharika’s message. A week into the New Year, he is already doing the things he preached against in his message to millions of Malawians. Mutharika is the epitome of hypocrisy.
Disclaimer: Views expressed in this article are not necessarily the views of the Publisher or the Editor of Maravi Post