Govt Moves In On Teachers’ Arrears

Principal Secretaries for Education Science and Technology Justin Saidi and Kiswell Dakamau for Local Goverment and Rural Development on Tuesday met district commissioners and Chief Executive Officers to understand why some teachers are not yet paid their arrears.

The meeting took place in Lilongwe following a letter from Teachers Union of Malawi in which they complained that some teachers are not yet paid their arrears and TUM threatened to organise a sit by the teachers.

In the letter, TUM said since payment of teachers was decentralized, payment of arrears has remained a challenge.

Sources at the Ministry of Education Science and Technology said they are surprised why the arrears are not yet paid.

“But the payment will be done as soon as possible,” one official said.

TUM’s letter is signed by its president Willie Malimba, Secretary General Charles Kumchenga and Treasurer General Ernest Chirwa and is dated June 18, 2018.

FAO Special Ambassador King Letsie 111 Meet APM, Hails Malnutrition Fight

President Prof Arthur Peter Mutharika has affirmed his government’s commitment to end hunger and malnutrition which remains high among Malawians especially children.

Mutharika made the remarks in Lilongwe at Kamuzu Palace on Monday during an audience with His Majesty King Letsie III of the Kingdom of Lesotho. The king is in the country in his capacity as United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Special Ambassador on Nutrition.

President Mutharika said the fight against hunger and malnutrition requires collective efforts hence the need for all stakeholders to hold hands with government and work together for the benefit of all Malawians.

In an effort to eradicate hunger in the country and address malnutrition, government intends to intensify irrigation farming than just relying on rain-fed agriculture, according to the president.

“Rain fed agriculture is no longer reliable and we have to look for alternative ways. My government has embarked on a mass irrigation project that will be the largest in Southern Africa,” Mutharika said.

Addressing the press after an audience with President Mutharika, His Majesty King Letsie III described the visit as great and cordial saying he had fruitful discussions with the Malawian leader.

“Our discussion centred on nutrition. We talked about the strides Malawi has made over the years in nutrition and fighting malnutrition,” King Letsie said.

Among other issues discussed were various strategies that Malawi is using in improving the nutritional status of its people and how Malawi and Lesotho can work together in fighting malnutrition.

The King observed that Malawi is doing very well in nutrition and that is why he came in order to learn a few things.

According to rankings produced by the United Kingdom Institute of Development Studies in collaboration with the New Partnership for African Development, Malawi is ranked second among 45 African countries that are doing well in fighting malnutrition.

Minister of Health Atupele Muluzi said the story of Malawi’s success is due to a strong political commitment that ensures that nutrition is put at the centre of policy development.

“We’ve managed to bring down stunting from 47% in 2010 to 37% at present. We’ve seen reduction in vitamin A deficiency. We’ve also seen reduction in anemia,” Muluzi said.

The Malawi Growth and Development Strategy (MDGS) III puts nutrition as one of the priority areas of development.

Hypocrites: Malawi’s CSOs In Cashgate Over UN’s Elections Funds

Some of the Malawi mercenary cso’s abusing donors money

Gross lack of accountability has been exposed as 75 percent of CSOs that got elections funding towards the 2014 Tripartite Elections have failed to reconcile their accounts books todate. This has angered the UN which funds the NGOs through the UNDP which manages the Elections Basket Funding making it hard for the UN to fund them again for 2019 elections.

Projects Manager for the NGO Board Joel Mkandawire has confirmed the unfortunate development which vindicates the long held concern that many of the vocal and anti-governenment CSOs are simply conduits for siphoning donor money in the name of the people and enriching themselves under the pretext of human rights activism.


Road To 2019: Nkhata Bay DC Bemoans Inadequate Voter and Civic Education

Nkhata Bay District Council has expressed concern that Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) accredited by Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) have not yet started conducting voter and civic education in the district.

MEC accredited Mzuzu Young Voices, Centre for Youth Empowerment and Civic Education, NEST, Youth Net and Counselling (Yoneco), Mbaweni Youth Association, World Fit for Children, Phunzilani Development Organisation and Foundation for Children’s Rights.

Speaking recently during a District Executive Committee meeting, Nkhata Bay District Commissioner (DC) Rodney Simwaka said there is need for serious civic education now that MEC will use voter biometric registration system.

Basically, the biometric system will involve use of National Identification (ID) cards during voter registration which means only those with the IDs will be allowed to register.

MEC has since arranged to have National Registration Bureau staff at voter registration centres to allow those that did not register during the recent mass national ID registration exercise to register for both at one venue.

“Communities need to be sensitized on the importance of registering using voter biometric,” Simwaka said.

National Initiative for Civic Education (NICE) District Manager Lucy Kaluwa said it is only NICE who are on the ground civic educating the communities on registration which starts October this year in the district.

“We are now busy civic educating the communities using football bonanzas on the importance of registering for the forthcoming tripartite election next year,” Kaluwa said.

Yoneco’s Nkhata Bay District Manager Dunreck Pande said his organisation is looking for funds to start the civic education.

But Nkhata Bay District Electoral Clerk Master Nthali said apart from accrediting CSOs, MEC has employed constituency civic education assistants.

Meanwhile, phase one of voter registration starts on 26th June in Kasungu, Salima and Dedza districts.  Nkhata Bay, Likoma, Mzimba and Mzuzu are in the last phase (eight) which will start on 27 October, 2018.

Mulanje chief jailed for defrauding Oxfam

Magistrate Damson Banda: Delivered the sentence

The First Grade Magistrate Court in Phalombe on Thursday sentenced Group Village Headman Kamwendo of Traditional Authority (TA) Nkanda in Mulanje to 30 months Iimprisonment for obtaining by fraud K792, 000.00 cash from Oxfam.

A court report indicates that the chief, whose real name is Patrick Gama, used one of his subjects, Owen Banda, to solicit the money on the pretext of representing beneficiaries of Oxfam’s Social Cash Transfer who were not present.

Oxfam was conducting a cash transfer programme in Mulanje and Phalombe districts where it was giving free money to ultra-poor households for them to survive.

Phalombe Police arrested Gama 52, on 27 February, 2017 upon receiving a complaint from Oxfam officials about this chief’s conduct.

During hearing of the case, state prosecutor Inspector Hartwell Kachikonga asked the court for a stiff punishment as a way of sending a message to people in leadership positions that they will not be spared if found on the wrong side of the law.

“Your Worship, the chief is a public figure in his community and his conduct has brought disrepute to status of traditional leaders. As such, he deserves a stiffer punishment,” Kachikonga told the Court.

In mitigation, the accused pleaded for a lenient sentence saying he is a first offender and the bread winner for his family which has 6 children, four of whom are orphans.

In his judgement, first grade magistrate Damson Banda said the traditional leader’s act was shameful and sent a bad message to young people who might become crooked leaders in the future hence no need for granting leniency.

The Magistrate then sentenced the accused to two and half years in prison effective 13 June, 2018.



DPP CONVENTION:Clement Mwale To Challenge Jefu Wa Jeffrey On SG Post  

“I want to bring new and civilized politics in DPP. I want to help the party triumph convincingly during the forthcoming tripartite elections,” Mwale told Nyasa Times in an exclusive interview on Sunday.

Mwale is not new to DPP politics. He has served the party in various administrative capacities since its formation in 2005, under its father and founder, the late Bingu wa Mutharika.

According to Mwale, he served as DPP administrator responsible for the day to day operations of the party at its national headquarters secretariat, and was appointed its administrative Secretary in 2014, a position that he served up 2014. This is the experience that gives him a head-start to bring in the needed operational creativity and leadership for a seamless and forward-looking DPP as it glides into victory in the tripartite elections next year, he said.

Mwale claims his decision to contest draws from a consistent desire to serve in the DPP leadership with utmost loyalty, diligence and dedication in order to take the party to greater heights in line with the party’s founding leader, late President Bingu wa Mutharika’s vision of transforming the political organization into one that truly serves the interests of Malawians.

Road To DPP Convention: Nankhumwa To Challenge Chaponda

Nankhumwa is  leader of government in Parliament and member of Parliament for Mulanje Central constituency.
Through his official Facebook page Nankhumwa announced: “After a lot of deep soul searching, I am finally pleased to announce that I will run for the position of Vice President South.”
He said “servant leadership is key to DPP success in the forthcoming elections.”

JB to contest in 2019 elections

JB: To contest in 2019

Former president Joyce Banda has said she will contest as presidential candidate in next year’s elections.

She disclosed the news at a rally in Zomba over the weekend.

Banda was Malawi’s president from 2012 to 2014. She took over after the death of president Professor Bingu wa Mutharika who died of cardiac arrest in 2012.

But Banda performed miserably in 2014 elections. She failed to win although she was the sitting president.

From the opposition bench, the current president Professor Peter Mutharika beat and displaced her.
She came third.

After the results were announced she went into self exile and only returned afew months ago.

The Anti Corruption Bureau says it has not cleared her from cash gate cases, the plunder of public resources that took place during her rule.Some of the convicts implicated her in court.