Malawi’s Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Abel Kayembe says the high vacancy rate in the ministry is affecting delivery of services.
Speaking in an interview on Monday, Kayembe said the expectations are there for the Ministry to deliver top notch services, but there are a few officers in the Ministry.
“We are currently short of protocol officers and foreign services officers. This is affecting our operations. In the next budget, we will ensure that we are allocated enough funds so that we recruit the foreign service officers and protocol officers,” he said.
Kayembe also disclosed that plans are at an advanced stage to open a High Commission in Kenya.
“We have already sent the deputy ambassador to Kenya. Soon, we will be sending a High Commissioner. The good thing is that we already have our own offices in Nairobi and once the President nominates the individual and Parliament approves, then he will leave for Kenya,” said Kayembe.
Kayembe said Kenya will be a strategic hub for the country as it seeks to diversify its economy to move from being a predominantly importing nation to an exporting one.
Apart from opening the High Commission in Kenya Kayembe also disclosed that Malawi will open consular offices in Tete and Nampula to ease the movement of tourists between Malawi and Mozambique.
“The mining activities in Nampula and Tete have compelled us to open the consular offices because we know many people will want to visit Malawi. It will not be good for tourists from Mozambique to go all the way to Maputo just to get a visa which will enable them visit a country just 200 kilometres away from Tete,” said Kayembe.