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Festive season delays government, Cham deal

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The signing of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) between the Malawi government and Christian Health Association of Malawi (Cham) will be delayed until Friday next week, The Daily Times has learnt.

Initially, the two parties were supposed to have the new deal signed by December 20 this year, but according to Minister of Health Peter Kumpalume, the delay is due to the festive season holiday. He said a technical team comprising members from the Ministry of Health and Cham was supposed to meet again to come up with the figures as to how much the deal would cost government.

“For everything else we have the approval like the Ministry of Justice, but the only thing is that the technical team overlooked how much the new deal will cost the government. The Ministry of Finance would like to know the final amount and this demands that the technical team must meet.

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“My understanding is that by next week Friday everything will be finalised and the actual implementation will remain unchanged as it will start on July 1st, 2015,” Kumpalume said.

Cham Executive Director, Mwai Makoka, who refused to disclose some of the contents in the deal, said they are ready and are just waiting for the government to sign the deal.

But Kumpalume told members of Parliament recently that the new deal would provide other services which were not covered in the previous agreement, saying people will access healthcare services for other diseases, apart from maternal issues.

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Meanwhile, government owes Cham over K200 million in unpaid bills accumulated through the Service Legal Agreement (SLA) the two parties signed in 2002.

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