On Sunday, Malawi’s sixth President Lazarous Chakwera and Vice President Saulos Chilima swore well and truly serve Malawian and to defend the country's Constitution. On May, they get down to business and political commentators have urged them to commit to delivering a set agenda.
In an interview, University of Malawi political science professor Blessings Chinsinga said Malawi’s former president Peter Mutharika lost it because he was reluctant president a scenario that must be avoided by the new administration.
“Mutharika did not stamp his authority interms of forging out a strategic direction for this country. He allowed to so many people to be doing what ever they wanted without him stamping the ultimate authority in terms of determining where he wanted to take Malawi to.
“As a result, he ended up focusing on a tribal building project which meant that instead of building a nation, he was building a tribe. As you know there was a great deal of tribalism, nepotism, corruption, public services were collapsing and that really made Malawians tired and that’s why today he’s been voted out,” observed Prof. Chinsinga.
To succeed he urges President Chakwera and the Tonse Alliance comprising nine political parties led by the Malawi Congress Party to stick to doing what is right.
“I think it’s very important that he [President Chakwera] and Dr Chilima do come up with a political project of what they want to achieve in the next five years. They should not just be driving the country without a strategic blueprint. The good news for them is that they have the super high five philosophy, it gives them the platform or the oil to that would lubricate their governance machinery.
“Its very important for them to realise that as a country we are in a state of flux almost all sectors are in decline, but the good news is that Malawians realise that the country can not be fixed overnight. What they want are leaders that would take focused and decisive steps that would demonstrate that almost immediately the country is moving into the right direction,” he said.
Political commentator Humphrey Mvula concurs and urges the new government to deliver on its promises.
“They have won on a good manifesto, cheap universal fertilisers, jobs, Malawi for everyone plus all other good progammes. If this government wants to win to retain the trust of Malawians, it must indeed look at every Malawian as a Malawian, no tribal politics, no politics of relatives, no politics of employing only those party cadres, they’ll need to change and start all over again and include everyone
Professor Chinsinga is also of the view that the 50 percent plus one legal requirement for one to be elected president is key to building Malawi’s democracy as one has build a broad-based coalition and this is quite key interms of building our democracy.
“More importantly it’s a basis for ensuring that as a country going forward, we have an inclusive governance system,” he says.
Mvula agree and says the new system will keep leaders of the coalition on their toes.
“At the alliance level, there will be checks and balances offered by other parties. That struggle, is going to make this government tick, because when you have a party and you are the sole leader, you are looked at as a traditional leader, as a demi-god but when there are several other parties you’ll be sensitive.
“They have just got to. build mechanisms to resolve conflict, so that it does not fester and derail the business of government,” he says.