Malawi: DPP's Rashy Makes It in Tonse Govt - 'Cashgate Masterminds in Malawi Cabinet'

One of the key financiers of Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) and former Blantyre Kabula Member of Parliament (MP) Rashid 'Rashy' Gaffar has made it into the Tonse Alliance government with his appointment in Cabinet.

Gaffer, who just before voting in the fresh presidential elections made a deal with State House through his Rashy Motors to sell two Higger buses for domestic football powerhouses--Nyasa Big Bullets and Be Forward Wanderers-- has been appointed as Minister of Mining.

The Wanderers Cub trustees chairperson received a cheque amounting to K300 million from State Residences for the buses, a controversial gifts from immediate past president Peter Mutharika to the Bullets and Wanderers.

The payment was processed through National Bank of Malawi's Lilongwe Service Centre and the buses were branded at City Motors in Blantyre.

Gaffer, a former deputy minister in the Peter Mutharika administration, has been one of the frontline troops of DPP and top financier for the party.

However, sources say he had also invested in post-election changing political goal posts by parallel financing UTM Party which is a partner of Malawi Congress Party (MCP) in the Tonse Alliance government.

Rashy has not renounced his DPP membership and is yet to be seen if he will still carry the party's tag in Tonse Alliance government.

Commentator Stanley Onjezani Kenani observed: "At least one DPP member has been included in the cabinet, so perhaps that is a plus, since this is a Malawi for all."

South Africa-based Malawian lawyer Professor Danwood Chirwa observed that the restructuring of government seems to have been shaped by "political deals than by a concern for effective implementation of the alliance manifesto."

Chirwa noted that questionable characters have been handed posts.

"The first cabinet was meant to send a clear message to all and sundry that patronage, corruption and looting will end, that those who have looted before will be investigated and prosecuted, and that new, clean and competent people will lead Malawi," he pointed out.

He said: "How can one talk of being serious about corruption, yet cashgate masterminds and beneficiaries are part of government? Who are the shining lights in this cabinet? This is probably the most incestuous cabinet since 1994."

Government's immediate duty will now be to implement strategies that will work towards achieving the country's short and long-term development plans, as well as the overall Tonse Alliance development agenda.

There is also urgent need to implement measures to stamp out corruption - which was rampant in the DPP regime - and review enabling legislation and agencies to ensure effective processes.

More From: Nyasa Times

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