Chronic ad hoc implementation of national development strategies emanates from the parties’ failure to synchronise nation development strategies with party’s ideologies, an economic analyst observed soon after Zodiak Broadcasting Station (ZBS) running mates debate was concluded on Friday night at Comesa Hall in Blantyre.
Economist Chikavu Nyirenda walked out of Comesa Hall an unsatisfied person after witnessing presidential running mates fumbling the question on how parties will synchronise ideologies to existing national development strategies to steer national development if they assume power.
Malawi has numerous blueprints for its development agenda. However, it has been observed that a political party in government implements ‘development strategies’ outside the laid- down national plans.
The country is currently pursuing the Malawi Growth and Development Strategy II 2011-2016 as its current developmental strategy which covers five years from 2011 to 2016.
Answering a question on synchronisation of party ideologies to national development strategies, Malawi Congress Party (MCP) running mate Richard Msowoya raised his party’s cornerstones as ideologies that would help to steer national development in line with the existing developmental strategies.
Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) running mate Saulos Chilima, however, presented the party’s development strategies as the party’s ideology while United Democratic Front (UDF) Godfrey Chapola highlighted the party’s ideologies as liberal.
Nyirenda soon after the debate said the panellists failed to articulate their parties’ ideologies in line with the country’s development agenda as highlighted in national development strategies, a vice, which he said has been retarding Malawi development.
“After 50 years and with over 50 political parties, no party can clearly articulate its ideologies. The challenge Malawi faces now is that national development is implemented based on the whims of the president,” he said.
Nyirenda said the status quo exposed that political parties in Malawi suffer from the ‘founder syndrome’ which also crept into the running of government.
Former director of Office of the Director of Public Procurement Bright Mangulama said was impressed with the orderly manner which the debate was carried.
“In some cases, you wish you heard more. But we have to understand that these are running mates. I believe we will hear more from the presidents themselves if there is a chance for them to debate,” he said.