One important cornerstone of a functioning democracy is that all public officers should be transparent and accountable to the populace.
This is based on the premise that public power is conferred on trust by the citizenry and that it must be exercised solely to protect and promote the interests of the citizenry.
It, therefore, requires not only that all executive actions – decisions and conduct – comply with the Constitution but that reasons be provided for all administrative actions.
How then does the country reconcile the behaviour of certain public officials and offices with the aforesaid?
It is, for instance, in this vein that some civil society organisations (CSOs) in a petition have asked President Peter Mutharika to fire Minister of Finance, Economic Planning and Development Goodall Gondwe.
The CSOs accuse Gondwe of going against the very austerity measures that he preaches about in favour of political appeasement at the expense of suffering Malawians.
Goodall’s underhand tactics came to light following revelations by Malawi News of February 24 to March 2 2018, which reported that the government had allocated K40 million each to 86 Members of Parliament, most of whom voted against the Electoral Reforms (Amendment) Bills.
One cannot agree more that Goodall’s role in the scandal is a huge betrayal to Malawians as an entrusted keeper of the republic kitty.
It is a fact that, anywhere in the world, managers that misappropriate or fail to properly protect or give full account of resources of the organisation are axed and prosecuted to the full extent of the law and all the ill-gotten gains are returned to the rightful owners.
Surprisingly, the President’s spokesperson Mgeme Kalilani, in his response to the CSOs’ calls, has resorted to juvenile, undemocratic utterances which display and exhibit Executive arrogance and ignorance on a scale unheard of in a functioning democracy.
How can such underperformance by the most revered minister continue to command and enjoy the trust and confidence of the people of Malawi as demanded by the law?
Yet, Kalilani seems bent to reward such unhelpfulness with praise.
No amount of lack of shame or love of the country, as that depicted by Kalilani, will cure the country’s ills.
Goodall’s behaviour is at best the proof that the country does not need him near any public purse.
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