President Lazarus Chakwera yesterday made new appointments to State House and identified the appointees by district of origin, a strategy political analysts have faulted as not necessary.
State House director of communication and executive assistant to the President, Sean Kampondeni, in an interview defended the strategy of identifying which districts the appointees come from.
He said President Chakwera is leading a Tonse Alliance administration and when making appointments, he has to look across the nation.
“By disclosing which districts the appointees are coming from, it’s for transparency sake. People have to know where the appointees are coming from and if it’s inclusive in nature,” said Kampondeni.
But a political scientist at University of Malawi’s Chancellor College Mustafa Hussein dismissed Chakwera’s reasoning, arguing people have to be appointed on merit, should have the technical knowhow and be capable to deliver.
“Geographical spreading of positions should not be the first thing, actually what the President wants to do may have ethnicity undertones. While he may have good intentions, people would surely misinterpret this, it’s not necessary to refer appointees to their home of origin,” Hussein said.
Humphrey Mvula, another political analyst, said in an interview referring to appointees by districts they come from should not be encouraged.
“If people want to find out at some point where appointees are from, they can do that on their own. I understand the intentions of the President, this is coming after he was widely criticised on how he appointed his Cabinet, but again this is not the way to do,” Mvula said.
The political analyst said the Tonse Alliance with Chakwera and his running mate Saulos Chilima, now the Vice-President, strongly campaigned on one Malawi one nation principle, fearing this new strategy of identifying whereappointees come from may defeat this philosophy.
“They told Malawians they don’t believe in tribalism or regionalism, we should be getting rid of this, inherently, at an administration level, they should work on it to ensure appointments are not concentrated to two or three districts,” he said.
Mvula said the Tonse Alliance team promised during their campaign rallies that they would not be asking people where they come from when making appointments, but said it is clear that the appointing authority of the new appointments had to do a research about which districts the appointees are from, which he said is a bad a thing.
State House yesterday announced appointments of seven individuals to the various positions at the State House, disclosing that they come from Nkhotakota, Ntcheu, Zomba, Mzimba, Blantyre, Thyolo and Kasungu districts.
Chakwera appointed Overstone Kondowe as special adviser on People Living with Albinism and Disability and Reverend Brian Kamwendo as special adviser on religions affairs, with Sheikh Hashim Abbas as his deputy. The President also appointed Major Precious Mahara Gausi as assistant aide-de camp, Brian Banda as press secretary, Martha Chikuni as head of media and marketing and Solomon Kavuta as director of ICT.