….visits Tanzania, Japan, USA, Saudi Arabia in two months
By Nenenji Mlangeni
LILONGWE-(MaraviPost)-Malawi President Peter Mutharika will blow almost MK1 billion of taxpayers when he visits four countries within a space of two months, we can reveal.
According to sources from Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mutharika leaves the country for Tanzania on 16thAugust 2019 to attend the SADC Heads of State and government summit where he is expected to spend about four days.
From Tanzania, Mutharika is expected to leave for Japan on August 26, 2019 where he will spend about two weeks before proceeding to the United States of America (USA) for the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) and later on visit Saudi Arabia before coming back home.
“We expect the President to be back in the country sometime in October. He will be away for almost two months,” said a source in the ministry of foreign affairs at Capital Hill.
Mutharika trips will drain the national coffers about K1 billion in hotel bills, airline flights for his large entourage, allowances and other expenses.
Ministry of Finance officials confirmed the President will spend ‘a bit more money’ on the trips.
However, insiders said some government institutions and statutory corporations will be funding some people on Mutharika’s entourage.
“Institutions like Malawi Communication and Regulatory Authority (Macra), Escom, Malawi Gaming Board and Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA) have contributed enormous amounts of money for these trips and the whole figure is more than K1 billion that the President will use on these trips,” said a source at the ministry of finance.
“Some officials have started leaving especially for the USA as this is always a contentious issue and this time they tried to do it systematically by sending other people earlier.
“These are normally party supporters who will be disguising themselves as if they are going on personal errands but they are being funded by government,” said an insider privy to the trips.
Mutharika will blow the MK1 billion when the country is ‘bleeding’ economically with no medicines in hospitals and challenges in various schools due to lack of funding.
There was no immediate reaction from Mutharika’s spokesperson Mgeme Kalirani on planned trips to justify the costs amid tough time Malawi is going through.
This comes as his wife, Gertrude Mutharika got Malawians angry for spending over MK60million for a private trip to UK which government sorely financed.