Analysts rattle new cabinet
Political analysts have said the changes that President Peter Mutharika has made in his cabinet are more for political reasons than based on performance.
Chancellor College based analyst, Joseph Chunga, said in an interview Thursday that one would not really say that the sole casualty former Agriculture Minister, Allan Chiyembekeza, failed in his duties.
“I’m not really sure if we would say he has been removed for underperforming in that ministry. But maybe it raises questions about the political inclinations of the minister.
“When you have no clear direction in terms of how ministries are performing and ministers evaluated based on that, you only regret that its only political considerations that matter on whether someone retains their position in the cabinet. Other than that, I have no particular reason why I would say Chiyembeza failed compared to everybody else,” Chunga said.
But he hailed the removal of Jappie Mhango from Information Ministry saying he failed miserably in the portfolio.
“The change is long overdue because in all fairness, the minister was not doing the right thing in that ministry. He really failed miserably in terms of distinguishing his party’s enthusiasm and the respect and honour that has to go with a ministerial position that speaks on behalf of government,” he said.
He, however, expressed pessimism that the new Information Minister, Patricia Kaliati, will perform better.
“This idea that a government spokesperson in the ministry of information should be somebody who is able to make the best of the noises has not helped this country. I do not know what the President’s judgment is, but I think Kaliati will do the same job that Mhango was doing,” he said.
On his part political strategist, Humphrey Mvula said the sacking of Chiyembekeza was long overdue.
“It was expected. He messed up Fisp [Farm Input Subsidy Programme]. He gave conflicting statements on Fisp. He even said that irrigation was not plausible for Malawi, a statement that would not come from a minister in that portfolio,” he said.
Mvula also said Kaliati performed at the ministry of gender saying that Jean Kalilani will have it tough at the new ministry.
In the reshuffle, Mutharika has maintained the number of ministers at 20.
Francis Kasaila has replaced George Chaponda at foreign affairs. Kasaila has been replaced by Malison Ndau who has been promoted from being deputy minister of defence.
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