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Mutharika takes a swipe at ‘cheap politicking’: Concedes Malawi facing challenges

President Arthur Peter Mutharika Friday opened the 47th Session of Parliament in Lilongwe by calling members of the house to rise above cheap politicking and serve the interest of people they represent.

In a statement that ran close to 40 minutes, President Mutharika highlighted progress his government is making in macro economy, food security, energy, democracy and accountability, education and health care among others.

The president reminded the nation that in the past three years, inflation has fallen from 24 per cent to 8.4 per cent as of September 2017. He said his government has reversed the effects of the infamous Cashgate and the restriction of maize export has ensured that the nation remains food secure.

However, he bemoaned the conduct of some political leaders who choose to remain blind to some government achievements by opposing everything.

“There is no point in denying reality because we want to politick for the sake of politicking. Denial of our progress is testimony that this country has people who oppose my government for the sake of opposing.

“This country has politicians who don’t wish Malawians well.

They are so much obsessed with scoring cheap political points that they would rather see Malawi failing than prospering,” Mutharika said.

The president, therefore, called for togetherness in sustaining the achievements that government is making in most of the critical sectors of development.

In the statement titled “Rising above macroeconomic stability”, President Mutharika also appreciated the suffering Malawians are going through because of power shortages.

He said government has short and long term solutions to the electricity problem that include installation of grid-connected solar power plants and diesel powered generators as well as rehabilitation of old power plants and construction of new ones like Tedzani VI.

Responding to the president’s statement, Leader of Peoples Party (PP) in the house, Ralph Mhone, said their job as opposition is to scrutinize government’s programmes rather than just opposing for the sake of opposing.

“What we do is to scrutinize government’s programmes and see whether what has been proposed by government is for the benefit of Malawians,” Mhone said.

Leader of opposition and President of Malawi Congress Party Dr. Lazarus Chakwera said the statement overlooked some outstanding issues from previous sittings.

He pointed out issues like reforms of electoral laws, the Political Party Bills and the establishment of National Planning Committee.

“While the President took us into another public lecture on the role of parliament, he left out these outstanding critical issues which government promised to bring in this sitting.

“During the last business meeting last week, they said cabinet is meeting Thursday (9, November) to deliberate on the same. But there is nothing concerning these issues on this sitting,” Chakwera said.

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