Amid public concerns following President Lazarus Chakwera’s appointment of his daughter Violet Mwasinga for a diplomatic post in Brussels, the State House has come in defence on the matter.
Presidential Press secretary Brian Banda described the criticisms as unsubstantiated arguing that since assuming office, Chakwera has made over 2,000 appointments in the civil service and out of those, only one appointment should not cause alarm as it was duly vetted and followed thorough processes.
Speaking during the fortnightly state house brief, Banda indicated the selections are initiated and vetted by Ministry of Foreign Affairs before being presented to the President who then queries them and have to be justified by the Ministry.
He stressed that State House does not agree with the public view as Mwasinga is qualified and capable of doing the task she has been assigned for.
“The only problem that the person you are referring to is being the daughter of the President. We at state house find that lacking; so we at State house we find that conclusion unfair because out of 2000 appointments in the civil service, you’re just referring to one person because she is the daughter of the President. We find that unfair!
“All these people have been duly vetted, scrutinised; they have been found to be capable and qualified for these particular jobs, and your only concern is that she should not go because she is the daughter of a President?
“We find that very worrisome because if you had said that maybe she is not qualified, she was not vetted, she didn’t go through the processes of recruitment, then maybe we could have agreed with you. The only sin that she has is that is that she is the daughter of the President and that’s not being fair.”
The Malawi leader is on record to have branded such choices related to those close to power as nepotistic and breeding corruption when he was in opposition.
Commentators have questioned his decision which is seen as a complete departure from his promises of fighting corruption and ending nepotism.