Task forces signify Mutharika’s cluelessness


Mdzukulu, if you honestly asked me, I would truthfully tell you that the county’s leadership needs some revolution to convince subsequent leaderships to treat with genuine respect, reverence, adoration and appreciation their true bosses – the general populace that put them in elective office.

In fact, it is this general populace that the county’s leadership needs to be accountable to for the exercise of all public power and whose trust and confidence it must enjoy at all times and convince it that it is not using their public positions for personal gain and avoid any conflict of interests between their private and official undertakings.

But you know, mdzukulu, there is much frustration that since the second coming of Democratic Progressive Party under the tutelage of President Peter Mutharika, the country has discussed the merits of a transformational leadership that will change the face of Malawi.


The view across the sweeping ranks is that nothing has significantly changed regarding transformative and moral quality of the leadership.

The view of the povo, mdzukulu, is that the government is being run on trial-and-error and sometimes on autopilot as others have well described it.

To be precise, the narrative of the past three years unanimously notes that government has no new ideas to move Malawi forward. But I understand the official position contradicts this thinking.


Imagine the government’s reaction on the Lilongwe’s Area 18 water contamination saga. You can actually note that there is no commitment.

Which why, mdzukulu, I join the Human Rights Consultative Committee (HRCC) in condemning President Peter Mutharika’s move of establishing a task force to look into the circumstances surrounding the distribution of contaminated water to Area 18 residents recently.

Experience has taught us that such moves are but a waste of precious fiscal and material resources.

Examples abound of task forces-cum-commissions of enquiry that ended into the darkest hole of uncertainty. The latest task force on Bingu National Stadium stampede, for example, is yet to release its report weeks after the tragedy.

But, mdzukulu, leadership is about decision making.

Leadership, as such, is made to despise irresolution.

Leadership has no time for procrastinators or dithers – nor should it have if leaders avoid difficult decisions or are chronically unable to make up their minds in a Mutharika line of attack.

HRCC is right that “it is a fact that people were given contaminated water and we have multiple evidence, we believe subjecting Area 18 residents to another investigation is torture and humiliating after the trauma.”

But Mutharika can afford to subject the country’s citizenry to such torture because we, mdzukulu, are still ‘subjects of some ancient kingdom’ in thinking as we are failing to make the transition to dutiful citizens with full rights to exercise under the new democratic dispensation in the country.

We have accepted our status as ‘subjects of a kingdom’ rather than dutiful citizens of a functioning democracy and the double-distinction of having a very pliant president who is clueless about his responsibilities as a country’s top manager.

Deliberation should not be confused with irresolution.

The President, the elected chief administrator of the State and the chief public appointing officer responsible for appointing all key officials including the chief executive officers of water boards and city councils has no reason to procrastinate on an issue which is so apparent that even a five-year-old could urgently determine.

Yes, mdzukulu, it is not dithering or procrastinating to take the time to examine the map to make sure you are on the right road but Mutharika’s ‘deliberation’ is just too prolonged to be desired, especially when it leads into a cycle of tried-and-found-wanting task forces and the like.

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