President Lazarus Chakwera has condemned growing levels of lawlessness in the country including the public sector, with a warning that he will fire all public servants bent on sabotaging government’s development agenda.
Speaking when he presided over the commemoration service for Malawi’s first president the late Hastings Kamuzu Banda in Lilongwe yesterday, Chakwera bemoaned that just like Malawians have neglected the rule of law in the last two decades, so have government officials in execution of duty.
He thus challenged that those not willing to serve the country in accordance with the law should pave the way for others.
“If you think you cannot do your work diligently according to the prescribed statutes, then there is no reason for you to be in the positions that you are holding…there is no nation that has developed while disregarding its own laws,” Chakwera said.
He said at the dawn of democracy in 1994, a majority of Malawians moved with speed into the future with freedom, without carrying the law in the other hand.
This, he said, resulted in 26 years of lawlessness in many areas such as agriculture, politics, elections, the media, government institutions, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and judiciary among others.
“When I said during the campaign that one of my missions is to restore the rule of law, it was my goal to remove this imbalance between freedom and law. We must have a balance between both in order to ensure that we are not only a free nation but also a strong and united one,” he said.
The Malawi leader then said by assenting to the 15 recently passed bills including the contentious NGO Bill into law, his intention is not to take away anyone’s freedom but to end the culture of lawlessness and protecting everyone’s rights and freedoms.
As a way of cementing unity, forgiveness and peaceful co-existence, Chakwera has directed Minister of Tourism, Wildlife and Culture Michael Usi to engage with the family of former president the late Bingu wa Mutharika on how government can come in to take responsibility of taking care of his grave called ‘Mpumulo wa Bata’ at his Ndata Farm in Thyolo.
In his remarks, Usi reiterated the need for unity and honesty, saying it is the only way Malawi can deal with some of the socio-economic challenges being experienced. Representing family members, one of Kamuzu’s grandchildren and Member of Parliament for Kasungu Central Constituency Ken Kandodo hailed Chakwera’s administration for what he described as high regard for the country’s first president.
Kandodo challenged the current administration to build on the solid foundations for the country’s development which Kamuzu laid. Kamuzu Day falls on May 14 every year and was this year commemorated under the theme: ‘Reflecting the culture of unity in diversity and contact and dialogue for nation building.’