By

Innocent Mawaya

It seems Malawi President Joyce Hilda Mtila Banda may be walking her last political mile as the country’s donors and international partners ordered her to make yet another cabinet reshuffle.

The donors have told the Malawi leader, whom specifically they want axed and as a ‘donor fearing leader’ Mrs Banda has committed herself to do as per instructed by her ‘Azungu’.

President Joyce Banda has since been given a deadline of 2 months to act swiftly on the reports of looting in government coffers or face a total aid freeze.

According to a diplomat based in the administrative capital, Lilongwe, representatives of the diplomatic community including the IMF and World Bank met President Banda where they registered their concerns over her window dressing cabinet reshuffle.

“We openly told the President that what she did is not good enough. We listed down a few names that we thought were not supposed to be returned into the cabinet,” said the diplomat who has stayed in Malawi for about 2 years now.

MINISTERS TO BE SACKED

The diplomat further disclosed that they are not amused with the inclusion of the following recycled politicians in the cabinet;

Minister of Transport and Public Works Mohammed Sidik Mia,
Minister of Water Development and Irrigation Anita Kalinde,
Minister of Labour Grace Maseko,
Minister of Local Government and Rural Development Rachel Patience Mazombwe Zulu
Lands and Housing Minister Henry Duncan Phoya.

Much as the donors would have liked to see Vice President Khumbo Kachali also fired, they told the President they don’t want to put Malawi into a Constitutional turmoil.

However, they have demanded that the Vice President be stripped off all his ministerial responsibilities.

Apart from being the second in command in the country, Khumbo Kachali is also responsible for; National Relief and Disaster Management, National Public Events Office, Central Government Stores and Department of Printing Services.

PRESIDENT BANDA’S COMMITMENT TO FIRE MINISTERS

Another diplomat corroborated the story as given by his counterpart further indicating that Mrs Banda agreed to do as per requested.

The President asked for support from us, the international community, and we pledged to offer assistance to her and Malawi in particular on the condition of another cabinet reshuffle. She committed to do as per requested.

The diplomat disclosed that during the meeting, President Banda also raised a concern that whilst she is ready to do the reshuffle and sack the listed people she was not happy that at times, donors have let her down by not doing their part of the commitment.

He said Mrs Banda told the meeting that she knows the repercussions of the proposed reshuffle but said she was ready to do it as long as the donors are on her side.

FALLOUT FROM THE RESHUFFLE

If President Joyce Banda goes ahead to dismiss the following; Minister of Transport and Public Works Mohammed Sidik Mia, Minister of Water Development and Irrigation Anita Kalinde, Minister of Labour Grace Maseko, Minister of Local Government and Rural Development Rachel Patience Mazombwe Zulu and Lands and Housing Minister Henry Duncan Phoya and strip off all ministerial responsibilities from Vice President Khumbo Kachali, she may be digging her political grave.

Some of the listed ministers are influential founders of the ‘ruling’ Peoples Party and may now opt to join the opposition bearing in mind the reshuffle may be coming less than 6 months before the country goes to polls.

Malawians will be voting in Presidential, Parliamentary and Local Government Elections in May, 2014.

DWINDLING POLITICAL SUPPORT

President Joyce Banda’s support and that of her ‘ruling’ party ‘PP’ have plummeted in recent months following the murder attempt on the life of fired Budget Director Paul Mphwiyo.

Last Friday, President Joyce Banda was humiliated during the funeral of late Parliamentarian for Chiradzulu South, Eunice Kazembe.

During the funeral, there was strong opposition support leaving the president and her few supporters to watch the funeral proceedings in total ‘wet cat’ situation.

The President later left the event with her tail between her legs.

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