Malawi President Peter Mutharika on Wednesday reshuffled his cabinet and conspicuously missing is the mention of Vice-President Saulos Chilima.
Chilima, who fell out of favour with Mutharika and the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) to form United Transformation Movement (UTM) , was also removed as minister for Disaster Preparedness several months back and has since not carried out any event representing the government.
An analyst said the action by the President can be challenged in a competent court of law and he quoted the same Constitution that says: “There shall be a Cabinet consisting of the President, the First Vice-President, the Second Vice-President, Ministers and Deputy Ministers as may, from time to be appointed by the President.
A question was posed: “Last time we heard of constructive resignation of a VP, is this not constructive firing of a VP holding an elective office and hence breach of the Constitution?”
Another observer said the president and vice-president are voted in according to the Constitution. So the two are supposed to be always in any cabinet.
According to a statement signed by Chief Secretary to the President, Lloyd Muhara, the president, who is Commander-in-Chief of the Malawi Defence Force retains his post as Minister of Defence while Goodall Gondwe retains his portfolio as Minister of Finance, Economic Planning and Development.
Nicholas Dausi has been removed as Minister of Information and Communication Technology to Homeland Security. He has been replaced by Henry Mussa for that portfolio.
Francis Kasaila has moved from Sports to Ministry of Industry, Trade and Tourism and has been replaced by Grace Chiumia as Labour, Youth, Sports and Manpower Development Minister.
The other ministers are Dr Jean Kalilani for Lands, Housing and Urban Development, Kondwani Nankhumwa for Local Government and Rural Development, Atupele Muluzi for Health and Population, Joseph Mwanamveka for Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development.
Bright Msaka is for Education, Science and Technology, Samuel Tembeni is for Justice and Constitution Affairs, Dr. Emmanuel Fabiano for Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Jappie Mhango for Transport and Public Works, Cecilia Chazama for Gender, Children, Disability and Social Welfare.
Aggrey Masi is for Natural Resources, Energy and Mining, Everton Chimulirenji for Civic Education and Community Development and Charles Mchacha for Homeland Security.
There are just two Deputy Ministers, Amos Mailosi for Ministry of Defence and Welani Chilenga for Ministry for Natural Resources, Energy and Mining.
The President has also appointed Kalekeni Kaphale as the Attorney General following the resignation of Charles Mhango from the post.