Malawi: Chakwera's Partial Cabinet - Mixture of Hope and Anxiety for New Malawi

President Lazarus Chakwera has announced a partial Cabinet that, give it a second look, stirs a mixed feeling of hope and anxiety.

You have to be hopeful to see the energetic and workaholic Vice president Saulos Chilima back to head Public Sector Reforms where, after making great strides, he left a gap his contemporaries failed to fill.

Further, having Chilima manage the planning of our economic policy is saucy and juicy because, we know, he will be at the heart of implementing every detail they promised Malawians during the campaign period.

However, I am anxious as to why Finance ministry has, again, been divorced from Economic Planning and Development. The two works together and I would have loved to see them together being headed by Chilima, not Felix Mlusu.

Not that Mlusu is bad. No. Rather, Chilima's work ethic and energy could help a lot in cleaning the swamp that is in our finance ministry.

Further, Mlusu, for God's sake, retired in 2016 after over 40 years in corporate governance. We should have left him resting. I don't find it progressive to be resurrecting retirees when we have several progressive young people in finance that can also do better.

Our justice system with Chilima's lawyer, Dr Chikosa Silungwe as Attorney General, and Chakwera's lawyer, Modecai Msisha, as Justice and Constitutional Affairs Minister, doesn't look bad. What the two can do is a story we all bore the truth and we are self-evident.

Some, of course, can argue that their appointments are more on the appeasing side--which is true; however, we should never shy away from the fact that the two are well-trained and, importantly, immensely experienced.

My only worry, though, are two issues. Msisha is too old and tired. Just as Mlusu, the two should have been left to be resting--if anything, they should have been considered an advisory role, not an active public office they have occupied.

Secondly, we have this sensitive issue about Chakwera and Chilima lawyers billing Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) K9 billion as their legal fees. Granted, how will Silungwe and Msisha handle the outstanding legal fees issue which, we know, the two are also beneficiaries?

Otherwise, the rest of the other appointees don't stress me at all.

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