Finance Minister Goodall Gondwe says that while the economy will get worse, Malawians should be hopeful and look forward to a brighter May 2016. Now, being a politician, Honourable Goodall Gondwe should by now have gotten used to criticism. If he had said that he does not see light at the end of the tunnel, we would have clamoured for his head for depressing our mood. If he had said that based on the erratic rains that southern region is experiencing, looking in his crystal ball, he only sees dead bodies from starvation, the kwacha at 1 500 to a dollar and things like that, we would have asked what in the world was the government doing to prevent such a scenario.
Hon Gondwe knows that his other responsibility is to charm the market. Did they not say that even for medical doctors, their role is to charm the patient (and the guardians if needed) while nature takes its course? If the economy continues to slide, Gondwe will have an explanation as to how we have ended down there? Cashgate complications may be? If there is some improvement in the economy, due to donor inflows somewhat, then he is secured. After all, this is a country which wants the whiteman (and woman by the way) to allocate money to fund our primary and secondary education but we refuse to accept that tuition fees could be increased from the paltry K5 000. The right to education and the right not to pay for it are our birthright.
I was interested in the China-Malawi or China-Lilongwe company which is coming in with several investments. I am told there is also a hotel on the cards. Great news if we had the electricity to share around. In any case, we need to move ahead with the hotel and see whether we can light it or not in the future. May be we need also to think about solar solutions as we move foward with the hotel. These investors from China (I am avoiding the term “Chinese investors”) are not leaving any stone unturned. Were they not in Hon Joseph Mwanavekha’s constituency making a donation of some sorts? Honourable Mwanavekha is the minister responsible for trade.
There was that story in the newspapers that the Ministry of Information had hired some British PR company to prop up our State President by publishing articles in magazines. One person says there is no contract. Another says there was a contract by word of mouth. And yet another says that the Ministry agreed with this company such that payment will be discussed later. Whatever the case, the truth is difficult to find. My main interest is to see whether Ronald Mangani will release the money for such an expense. Let me clarify here. Dr Mangani does not make the payments himself. But he is on top of decision making in so far as what are the monthly needs and expenses of each of the MDAs (Ministries, Departments and Agencies). How will the K250 million PR payment look like on the monthly forms that Dr Mangani will receive? n