The future on the High Level Development Council (HLDC) which former President Joyce Banda formed in January this year awaits a cabinet decision.

Banda set up the council to provide leadership in reflecting on the past 50 years of the country’s independence and guide the nation in ensuring that it achieves all its development plans going forward.

Minister of Information, Kondwani Nankhumwa, said the decision on the future of the council awaits the first cabinet meeting.

One of the members of the council, Blessings Chinsinga, said the members are waiting for the new administration’s decision on whether to continue with it or disband it.

“We are waiting for guidance from the new government. There is nothing that I can say about what we tackled as members of the council regarding our objective and we cannot say that there’s any indication that we will meet soon since we are still waiting for the government to give its directive,” said Chinsinga.

He added that the 24 member council, which is chaired by Mathews Chikaonda, met several times since its formation in January.

In his state of the national address in Parliament President Peter Mutharika hinted on instituting a council with statutory powers to guide long term decision-making. He noted that national priorities keep changing to suit the political party in power and said the trend has proven detrimental to Malawi’s development.

Malawi Watch Executive Director Billy Banda has since urged Mutharika to sustain the council and incorporate former Presidents and Vice Presidents, former Speakers of Parliament and religious leaders.

“Each leader has good programmes for the nation but sadly there’s lack of continuity from each regime for the greater good of the nation,” Banda said.

He said the council needs to have statutory powers to guide the country’s leadership on how to harness development programmes.

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