Chairperson of the council of the Catholic University of Malawi (Cunima), Bishop Martin Mtumbuka, has urged graduating students to refrain from joining the bandwagon of politicians and individuals who are plundering public resources at the expense of poor people.
Mtumbuka, who is also Bishop of Karonga Diocese of the Catholic Church, urged them to go unto the world and join the battle against fraud and corruption to free people who are burdened by what he called as dehumanising poverty.
Mtumbuka spoke at Cunima ground during the university’s 12th congregation for the award of diplomas and degrees and its 10th anniversary celebration that was presided over by Vice President, Saulos Chilima. Cunima Chancellor, Archbishop Thomas Msusa of Blantyre Archdioce, Archbishop Tarsicius Ziyaye of Lilongwe Diocese also graced the ceremony.
“You should be committed to fighting poverty and you should not go out there to plunder national resources. You should not befriend and work for greedy people who are putting across their political or religious ideologies for self-enrichment,” Mtumbuka said in a veiled reference to the infamous Cashgate that continues to be presided over by politicians.
The Bishop, who is known for his frank talk, also urged the graduating students to focus on helping in the development of the country regardless of their ethnicity.
“It should not be about a specific political party, specific people, ethnicity or tribe. Our interest should be Malawi, our nation,” he said.
He also took a swipe at people that surround political leaders who end up fighting each other instead of advising the leaders.
But Mtumbuka also warned Cunima management against comp lacency, s a y ing the Catholic University owned by councils of bishops from eastern, central and southern African lost its standards because it failed to maintain the standards.
“Do not only focus on making money. Your friends in Kenya lived in the clouds until they lost out. They came back from the clouds not because they loved the students but because they loved money which they could no longer make,” Mtumbuka said amid handclapping from the gathering.
Taking his turn, Chilima asked the students to help entrench the spirit of doing business unusual.
“You have been educated in your brains but now it is time to educate your souls. We have the public reforms so that we change things for the better. We want your help to divert from our current situation. We are doing this because we cannot continue following the same way of doing things and expect different results,” Chilima said.
Chilima also urged private universities to consider providing scholarships to vulnerable students as part of their corporate social responsibilities.
Msusa said the 10 years that Cunima has been operating in the country have been successful looking at the growing numbers of people graduating from the institution.
A total of 285 students (176 males and 109 females) graduated on the 12th congregation with diplomas and degrees from faculties of Education, Social Sciences, Commerce and Theology.
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