Former Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) spokesperson Hetherwick Ntaba, who was appointed and confirmed as Malawi’s High Commissioner-designate to the United Kingdom, has withdrawn on personal grounds.
Speaking in an interview on Sunday, Public Appointments Committee (PAC) of Parliament chairperson Lingson Belekanyama confirmed Ntaba’s withdrawal, but could not disclose the reasons for the decision.
Said Belekanyama: “Yes, he [Ntaba] has withdrawn. I spoke with him and the President [Peter Mutharika] is aware of this. But as for the details, ask the Office of the President and Cabinet [OPC] or Dr Ntaba himself.”
Chief Secretary to the Government George Mkondiwa also confirmed the development, but said: “If you want the details, why don’t you call Dr Ntaba, he would be in a better position to divulge all the details you need.”
However, Ntaba could not be reached for comment as his mobile phone was either out of network reach or switched off.
In a related development, PAC has cleared two diplomatic appointees, Chrissie Kaponda (High Commissioner-designate to South Africa) and Ambassador-designate to Brazil Edward Sawerengera, saying the issues the committee had with them had been cleared.
However, Yunus Mussa (who was set to go to Egypt) and Ambassador-designate to Germany Voice Mhone still need to be replaced, according to PAC sources.
Last week, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation conducted an orientation for ambassadors and their deputies.