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Lazarus Chakwera speaks of citizen development

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President Lazarus Chakwera Thursday reiterated the need for change of mindset and altitude on the citizens’ role towards national development.

In his opening remarks at a two-day Annual National Development Conference, Chakwera said while the country will be pressed on developing various sectors, it is the citizens who would build a kind of Malawi they want.

“We cannot develop fully by doing one without the other, and it is certain that we cannot develop at all by neglecting both as we have done for a quarter of a century.

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“However, we must remember as we discuss these things that, nowhere is it truer than in matters of national development that talk is cheap. Building a new Malawi is a task for our hands, not for our lips,” he said.

Chakwera said the country already knows what it wants, through various development blue prints such as the Vision 2020, the Malawi Growth Development Strategy III, and Vision 2063.

“What we lack is a national resolve to move these things from our shelves and conference tables and turn them into reality. Too often we see ourselves as mere designers but time has come to see ourselves as makers of what we design. Too often we see ourselves as mere planners but time has come to see ourselves as developers of what we plan,” Chakwera said.

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He said the conference should be an eye opener to see what is lacking in development of the nation.

The conference has brought together experts from various sectors to validate emerging issues from consultative meetings that the National Planning Commission has had ahead of launching the Vision 2063.

NPC Chairperson, Richard Mkandawire, said what is coming out clearly is a youth-driven vision that leans on pillars of industrialisation, agriculture commercialisation and urbanisation.

“Effective long-term plan is critical. I urge Malawians to contribute to the discussion aiming at determining the future of the country,” he said.

Several groups including the private sector, the youth, and development partners pledged to support implementation of the vision.

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