The future of the out-going Malawi Defence Force (MDF) commander, General Peter Namathanga is uncertain as he is yet to receive communication from government on his next role.
On Friday, the sacked general handed over a sword of command to the re-instated commander, general Vincent Nundwe.
Nundwe was unceremoniously removed by former president Peter Mutharika in March this year.
In an interview after the sword of command handover ceremony at Kamuzu Barracks in Lilongwe, Nathamanga told journalists that he is yet to be informed of what becomes of him after his exit from MDF since he is yet to reach the retirement age of 65.
He said: “When I was appointed commander, I was aware the next move is to get out of the office of commander.”
But Namathanga said he was leaving MDF a happy man having led the force professionally during two critical moments in Malawi; Covid-19 and fresh presidential elections.
Asked if he was bitter with his sacking just about five months after being appointed, Namathanga—who has served MDF for 40 years—said he knew this day would come since it is a presidential prerogative as to whom should serve as army commander.
“I am proud that MDF under my command was able to manage the electoral period with strict adherence to professionalism and the law,” he said.
On his part, Nundwe said having returned to MDF as commander he will continue from where he stopped.
He also took time to commend his predecessor in the manner he led the MDF during the sensitive electoral period.
When he was shown the exit in March this year Nundwe had become the fourth commander to be fired under Mutharika’s six -year rule.
Nundwe’s term was the shortest as it only lasted for about 10 months a record Nathamanga has just broken as the commander with the shortest term.
His deputy was Lieutenant Colonel Davis Mtachi, who was also sacked and his next assignment is also unknown.
Namathanga joins a league of sacked generals such as General Ignacious Maulana, who was deployed to National Food Reserve Agency (NFRA) and General Supuni-Phiri, who is serving as national security adviser.
Sources say all three commanders still remain on MDF payroll waiting for their retirement.
According to MDF Act the retirement age for generals is 65.