I bet the handlers (assuming they are a professional bunch which I have always questioned) of President Peter Mutharika grilled and took him through the paces of the so called press conference (it was a DPP rally actually) to polish him up so that he could crash all the talk of his illness in the United States once and for all.
I suppose that was the reason why the presser was announced days in advance and the announcement kept the nation on tenterhooks.
Questions lingered in the minds of many a Malawian. Would the President show up at the press conference after he cancelled some functions that week? Was he alright and would he candidly talk about his health after he clearly was in pain with his right hand on arrival from the US that fateful Sunday?
Came the day, came the disappointment. Apart from assuring the nation that the problem is rheumatism on his right shoulder which had to be treated in the US, the press conference was a complete disaster and a waste of time for many Malawians.
The President said the wrong things and in a wrong manner.
In the end we learnt with horror that our President keeps a health insurance in the US while many Malawians are dying in our hospitals which have become waiting rooms before passing on to the other life.
This explains a lot to Malawians and key among it is the apparent incompetence in which the Mutharika government handles healthcare delivery.
This explains why despite the many complaints Malawians have lodged against the ever falling healthcare delivery in Malawi, this President has not for a single day taken time to see for himself why and how Malawians are dying like chicken flies in our hospitals.
We also learnt during the ill-fated press conference how clueless and hopeless our President is to solve some of the problems that have dogged this country for ages that include endemic corruption that has affected just everything including the Fertiliser Subsidy Programme.
Mutharika calmly said he has no idea how he would stop corruption dogging the programme. Now if he has no idea, who has or who should?
Why put taxpayers’ money in a programme where it will clearly be stolen when so many other pressing national needs are very clear for all to see?
Then the press conference itself was a rally. DPP zealouts were deliberately allowed to jam the presser and make sure that journalists were intimidated not to ask questions that matter on behalf of Malawians to the President.
Some journalists were shamelessly gagged from asking questions by presidential press secretary Mgeme Kalirani in a bid to stop Malawians from hearing the truth.
All this to me comes down to one thing. As Malawians, we are in trouble. We have a president who is clearly not a leader to take this country out of its present malaise and hopelessness.
Instead we have a president who does not know what he is doing and too laid back for our liking.
Instead of using the chance to motivate, excite and inspire us on the prospects of our country under his leadership, Mutharika came out as an arrogant character who did not show any iota of sense to be contrite about his sojourn in the US.
Here is a President who overstayed in the US and caused so much torment in the minds of Malawians as regards his well-being.
Instead of soothing this pain he went telling us how covered he is as his health insurance is in the US and how healthy he is and why we should go to hell and never ask him about anything that concerns his life.
This once again was a stark reminder of what kind of President we have at the State House and it is deeply worrying and unimpressive.
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