President Peter Mutharika yesterday made another diplomatic shake-up when he appointed nine new envoys.
The President also re-assigned Thoko Banda to Zimbabwe, to replace Jane Kambalame, after earlier reports indicated he was going to Brussels in Belgium to replace Dr Brave Ndisale, now working for Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) in Rome, Italy.
The new appointees, according to a press statement signed by Chief Secretary to the Office of the President and Cabinet (OPC) George Mkondiwa, include vocal human rights activist and former chairperson of Council for Non-Governmental Organisations in Malawi (Congoma), Voice Mhone, who heads to Germany.
Others include Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) vice-presidents for Eastern and Central regions, Yunus Mussa and Ted Kalebe, respectively.
Mussa has been appointed ambassador to Egypt while Kalebe, a former Cabinet minister and diplomat, will represent Malawi in Brussels, Belgium and the European Union (EU).
Necton Mhura, former deputy secretary to the OPC and lawyer who represented first Cashgate convict Tressa Namathanga Senzani, replaces Stephen Matenje in the United States of America (USA) while former Nsanje North parliamentarian Frank Viyazi goes to Mozambique.
Mutharika has also appointed former director of State Residences, Edward Sawerengera, as Malawi’s envoy to Brazil, taking the position of Dr Francis Moto while Chimango Chirwa, one of the advisers to Vice-President Saulos Chilima, is the new ambassador to Ethiopia and the African Union (AU).
The statement also said Dr. Chrissie Kaponda, a professor of nursing and midwifery at Kamuzu College of Nursing (KCN), is now the new High Commissioner to South Africa, replacing Stella Ndau.
However, Mkondiwa said apart from Banda, who was already confirmed by Parliamentary Public Appointments Committee (PAC), the rest of the newly-appointed diplomats will have to be assessed by the committee.
Mutharika, in exercise of the powers conferred upon him by Section 89(1)(e) of the Constitution, first made four new diplomatic appointments in August when he appointed Banda, doctor-cum-politician Hetherwick Ntaba (United Kingdom), Brian Bowler (United Nations), Charles Namondwe (China) and Frazer Nihoriya who was appointed consul general in Johannesburg, South Africa replacing Naomi Saukira.
However, all of them are yet to depart for their new respective work stations because government has not repatriated the former diplomats.