Lilongwe — pic by Govati Nyirenda
President Arthur Peter Mutharika on Friday called on political leaders in the country to rise above their partisan interests and unite to promote needs of Malawian citizens before anything else.
The State President made the remarks during the state opening of the 48th session of parliament in Lilongwe titled "Consolidating Our Gains for Rapid Transformation".
President Mutharika warned Malawi citizens against allowing the spirit of unlawfulness and violence to fester, which would lead to the evil ruling the country.
"Let me warn those inciting violence, those who attack peace should know that we shall pay any price, confront any danger, conquer any challenge to defend our precious peace.
"We cannot take peace for granted, peace is delicate, peace is precious, when peace suffers, innocent people suffer," said Mutharika.
The Head of State further highlighted the major policies set to take Malawi from poverty to prosperity.
"Today, we begin a process of making financial and economic decisions that affect the lives of the people.
"Our financial plan is based on the gains we have made in the last five years, the foundations we have set and the vision we have determine what to achieve in the next five years," he said.
Kondwani Nankhumwa who is leader of the house condemned the chaos and disruptions that occurred at the beginning of the event as unfortunate and a disservice to the nation.
"We are going to put in strategies to ensure that parliament business goes on as planned so that they are no disruptions in the provision of essential services.
"The answer lies in the parliament deliberations and decisions," said Nankhumwa.
He also urged Members of Parliament not to abscond from their duties for which they were elected-thus serve their constituencies and the masses.
Some opposition MPs, mostly those of Malawi Congress Party (MCP), walked out of Parliament in protest as President Mutharika was about to deliver his speech.
MCP and United Transformation Movement (UTM) are disputing the just-ended presidential election in court claiming it was marred by several irregularities.
However, Malawi Electoral Commission declared Mutharika winner of the election.