Malawi government says it finds claims by those agitating for a federal system of government to replace the current unitary government as lacking truth and not reflecting reality on the ground.
Proponents of federalism in the country have premised their calls on inequitable distribution of national development and tendency by the appointing authority to favour their region or tribesmen when it comes to making public appointments.
In the ongoing heated federalism talk, the north has frequently been named the most underdeveloped region that has also been said to have suffered the nepotistic approach of government to public appointments.
But reacting to the accusations, Presidential Press Officer Frederick Ndala said the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) administration cannot be blamed for marginalizing any part of the country, not even the northern region.
He cited Mombela University, Jenda-Edingeni-Mzimba road, Livingstonia-Rumphi road, Mzuzu-Nkhatabay road, Rumphi Teachers’ Training College, Northern Region Water Board (NRWB) expansion as some of the ‘tremendous’ developmental projects spelt in the just approved 2014/15 national budget.
On public appointments, Ndala wondered if by appointing four ministers from the north into a twenty-member cabinet, which accounts for 25% of the entire cabinet, government had demonstrated nepotism.
“Unless we want the whole cabinet to be appointed from the north, four ministers out of twenty is not a bad in a country that has four administrative regions,” he said.
The presidential pressman was also quick to say President Peter Mutharika does not look at where one comes from when hiring public officers.
“As far as the President is concerned, one’s region of origin does not form his prerequisite for people he hires to work with, but merit,” he said.