Sunday 25 June 2017
(Malawi News Agency 06/14/13)
Lilongwe — As Malawi joins the rest of the world in commemorating the Day of the African Child, Government has called on stakeholders to join hands in the fight against child marriages in the country. This year's commemorations will be held on 16th June at Chikala Primary School in Machinga district under the theme 'eliminating harmful social and cultural practices affecting children: Our collective responsibility.' Principal Secretary (PS) for the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Welfare, Dr. Mary Shaba said Malawi has adopted the theme with special attention to harmful economic practices that pose a risk to children and a focus on ending child marriages in the country. "The issue of child marriages is a great concern to the...
(The Nation 06/14/13)
Cost of living in Malawian cities rose to K96 255 (about $240) in May, which is about twice the average civil servants’ salaries which stand at K49 294 (about $123) after the February 2013 increment. The Centre for Social Concern (CfSC) basic needs basket (BNB) report released this week indicates a less than one percent rise from K95 708 in April to K96 255 in May. Commenting on the disparities in the BNB and wages, specifically for civil servants, in an interview on Tuesday, CfSC social conditions research programme officer Alex Nkosi said the differences have implications on corruption and productivity. "Employees may be tempted to be corrupt and accept bribes just to survive. The disparities may also explain the...
(The Nation 06/14/13)
Nyasa Manufacturing Company (NMC), Malawi’s sole cigarette maker, says it is ready for a public private partnership (PPP) that will enhance the company’s manufacturing to utilise about 15 percent of Malawi’s tobacco. Malawi President Joyce Banda, in her State of the Nation Address at the opening of the budget session of Parliament in May, hinted that government is in discussion with NMC to enter into a PPP for the expansion of the firm’s cigarette manufacturing plant. NMC chief executive officer (CEO) Konrad Buckle told Business News on Wednesday that under the PPP, the company will establish a cut rag and filter manufacturing plants, and expand its cigarette distribution network to 10 countries in the region. "A cut rag is a...
(The Nation 06/13/13)
The appreciation of the Malawi kwacha which started early April has brought mixed reactions from a cross section of the populace. While government and its apologists believe the economy is responding to the medication, in form of ‘tough and painful’ reforms effected last May, that include the depreciation of the local unit by 49 percent and adoption of a market-determined exchange rate, others argue it is just seasonal; hence, no cause for celebration. The kwacha, which since May 2012 went on the downward spiral and settled at around K420 to a dollar in March 2013, has since the onset of tobacco sales and helped by donor inflows, appreciated by about 20 percent and is now trading at around K338 to...
(Zodiak Online 06/13/13)
Civil servants Thursday morning presented a petition to parliament to consider accommodating their salary increment demands in the 2013/14 budget. The Civil Servants Trade Union has threatened that workers will down tools if they do not get new salaries in the forthcoming fiscal year. In the petition, the civil servants also want parliament to debate and pass the Public Service Remuneration bill during the ongoing session. Currently, there are disparities on the salary scale of civil servants in various departments despite workers having similar qualifications. Earlier in February this year, civil servants downed tools pressing for an increment and harmonization of perks. Government then succumbed to the pressure by giving the public servants a 61 percent salary hike to the...
(Zodiak Online 06/13/13)
As debate on the 2013/14 budget is still underway in parliament, faith based Center for Social Concern- CFSC- has described the financial plan as not being people centered. CFSC says in a statement issued along its May 2013 Basic Needs Basket that the budget does not aim at fully protecting vulnerable Malawians and reducing poverty. Finance Minister Dr Ken Lipenga on May 24 presented the K 638 billion budget in Parliament which he said focuses on healing Malawi’s ailing economy. But commenting on the President Joyce Banda’s second budget weeks after it was delivered in Parliament, CfSC has expressed worry that this budget, just like its preceding 2012/13 budget, is not people centered. It further calls on government to balance...
(The Malawi Democrat 06/13/13)
BEIJING – Malawi and China have signed two energy deals that would facilitate enhanced generation of electricity power totaling $667.233 million. The first deal involves a transmission line project that would see Chinese company, TBEA, construct additional and upgrade power transmission lines in the East African country to deal with problems of a saturated power transmission system. The second is where China Gezhouba Group Company (CGGC) will design and construct a Thermal Plant at Kammwamba in Neno, a district in southern Malawi.The Energy Minister of Malawi, Ibrahim Matola, revealed that after a survey of the existing transmission network, TBEA had proposed three possible upgrades in the following descending order of priority–Phombeya-Salima-Nkhotakota-Chatoloma, 220 KV Transmission Project; the Nkhota-Kota-Chintheche-Luwinga-Bwengu, 220KV Transmission Project;...
(The Maravi Post 06/13/13)
Malawi's president Joyce Banda says her government will focus on commercialization, diversification and modernization of the country’s agriculture sector. Pres. Banda spoke when she delivered a key note address at the 102nd session of the International Labour Conference in Geneva, Switzerland on Wednesday. The Malawi leader also told the conference that between 2004 and 2009 the country registered some robust economic growth averaging over 6 percent per annum, but this growth wasn't accompanied by any tangible jobs created in the economy. “The benefits did not trickle down to the population. It is therefore no wonder that for the past ten years poverty has not significantly decreased. The results of the Integrated Household Survey in 2010/2011 showed that poverty headcount is...
(The Malawi Democrat 06/13/13)
THYOLO (Mana)- Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) has hailed public involvement and has since reaffirmed its commitment to encouraging public participation in the run up to 2014 Tripartite Elections whose voter registration starts this July. MEC Commissioner, Rev. Chimkwita Phiri reaffirmed the commitment on Friday at a public hearing in Luchenza. Chimkwita Phiri said the electoral body is geared to cement due participation of the electorate as part of their consultative approach to running of the Tripartite Elections in which registration of voters will start on 22 July. “I want again to assure all Malawians that the Malawi Electoral Commission has set foundations for public participation in the country’s governance by promoting transparency and accountability in election management. Furthermore, we are...
(The Maravi Post 06/13/13)
The presidency, whether or not for its prominence, seems to be the public office that receives greatest attention; more so negatively and less so positively. In the history of presidents, President Joyce Banda appears to have had most negative attention of all presidents to have ever ruled Malawi. This has largely been due to her supposed lack of effective compass to safely and smoothly navigate the stormy waters of Malawi politics. There has been a good development worth writing home about in recent days—price reduction and Kwacha appreciation. Interestingly, the negative talk about the visionlessness of President Joyce Banda happens not to die despite this good news. This, by itself, should corroborate the statement that president Banda is the underappreciated...
(The Maravi Post 06/13/13)
For more than 20 years, the Malawi Congress Party (MCP) has had no chance of winning presidential elections. This bad luck could change in 2014. Peter Mutharika and Joyce Banda are certainly heavy contenders for the presidency. But if MCP chooses Lazarus Chakwera, he may be the man to beat. MCP is the only truly nationwide party in the country. It is the only party with a branch in almost every village. Those branches, now almost dormant, can spring back to life if a new charismatic leader comes along to lead the party. The only person capable of doing that at the moment is Chakwera. He commands trust of a spiritual leader in a deeply religious country. And having been...
(The Nation 06/13/13)
The Civil Society Education Coalition (Csec) has queried the over 800 percent increased monthly allocation to the office of the Minister of Education, Science and Technology in the 2013/14 budget after it jumped from K3 million (US$9434) to K28 million (US$88050). The coalition has also questioned the increased allocation to State Residences and local travel, demanding an explanation from government on these allocations before Parliament approves the National Budget. Csec’s concerns over the hefty allocations to the minister’s office, as indicated in its budget analysis, follows a similar concern raised by the Malawi Health Equity Network (Mhen) whose analysis also revealed that allocation to the Minister of Health’s office has also jumped from K3 million to K28 million per month...
(The Malawi Democrat 06/12/13)
LILONGWE (Linda Likomwa, Mana)— Minister of Education, Science and Technology, Eunice Kazembe said poor infrastructures in Public Secondary Schools are hindering students to go to universities. Kazembe said this on Monday in Parliament when a Member of Parliament for Lilongwe City Centre, Shadreck Jonas wanted to know why most students in the country’s universities are from private secondary schools. “The infrastructures in our public secondary schools are poor and that leads to poor delivery of quality education that made them fail to compete with students from private secondary schools,” Kazembe said. Kazembe added, “Most private schools in the country have good infrastructures and that contribute to quality delivery of education since the students have a good learning environment.” Most Members...
(The Maravi Post 06/12/13)
BLANTYRE (MaraPost)— Malawi's Pres. Joyce Banda, who over the weekend attended G8 Food Security and Nutrition Summit in London, leaves United Kingdom Tuesday for Geneva, Switzerland for 102nd Session of the ILO’s International Labour Conference. Pres. Banda, who has been invited by ILO Director General, Guy Ryder, will deliver a keynote address to the conference, according to Presidential Press Secretary Steve Nhlane. Nhlane said during the conference, the Malawi leader will highlight Malawi’s efforts towards job creation and income-generation opportunities particularly for youth, women and people with disabilities. She will take time to highlight her government’s efforts to eliminate all forms of child labour. The conference, which runs from June 5 to June 20, will tackle several outstanding issues including...
(Zodiak Online 06/12/13)
Malawi has received major investment pledges totaling 250 million dollars about 90 billion kwacha between July last year to April this year. Malawi Investment and Trade Center Chief Executive officer Clement Kumbemba says most of the investor are already doing studies specifically in areas of mining, tourism, agriculture and energy. "For the last 10 months we at MITC have received investment pledges in excess of 250 million US Dollars in sectors such as agriculture, mining and tourism," Kumbemba says. The MITC boss says most of these prospective investors are already doing business studies before making their investment. "But as you know this is investment not just business so it may take a year or so before we see these companies...
(Zodiak Online 06/12/13)
The country’s electoral body will officially launch the 2014 Tripartite Election on Friday June 14 in the commercial city of Blantyre. Malawi Electoral Commission Chief Elections Officer Willie Kalonga said this in a statement issued Sunday. Mr. Kalonga said during the occasion, MEC will also launch the Civic and Voter Education Strategy and the 2013 to 2017 Strategic Plan. “Delegates to the launch will include Presidents and Secretaries General of all political parties registered in Malawi, government officials, civil society organizations, the academia, development partners, the media, members of the diplomatic corps and other electoral stakeholders. All these have been sent invitations,” said Kalonga. During the event the commission will among other things present the long-awaited electoral calendar which will...
(Voice of America 06/12/13)
Ghana has arrested more than 100 Chinese nationals accused of illegally mining gold in that country. Zambia seized a Chinese coal mine in February over safety concerns. And Gabon is planning to take back assets from three foreign oil companies - including one from China. These moves and others have some analysts pointing to a backlash against Chinese investment on the continent. While experts say the China-Africa honeymoon may be over, divorce is not likely. China became Africa's top trade partner in 2009. Bilateral trade hit nearly $200 billion in 2012. Some Africans believe they are getting the short end of the stick, however, as they export valuable natural resources to China without receiving much in return by way of...
(The Malawi Democrat 06/12/13)
LILONGWE (Nation)-Civil servants are demanding a 71 percent salary increment in the 2013/14 National Budget whose implementation will start on July 1, saying they are ready to take a radical approach to the matter. The civil servants argue that the nine percent salary increment they have been given in the new budget is a “mockery” to workers in the public sector. Speaking during a press conference on Monday, Teachers Union of Malawi (TUM) general secretary Dennis Kalekeni said government risks creating chaos in the civil service if it fails to give them the 71 percent agreed by the technical committee set up to review civil servants’ salaries with the Government Negotiating Team (GNT). If effected, Kalekeni said, the 71 percent...
(AFP (eng) 06/11/13)
Malawi's popular gospel musician Joseph Alfazema has quit his singing career, at least for now, for a job as an unskilled agricultural labourer in South Korea where he hopes to earn "lots of dollars." He is among tens of thousands of Malawians soon to go to South Korea under a controversial employment scheme launched by President Joyce Banda to beat joblessness in the impoverished southern African country suffering over 50 percent unemployment. Critics fear the downside of the plan could be "modern-day slavery". But Labour Minister Eunice Makangala has rubbished the fears telling parliament recently that "it is not modern-day slavery." The president's plan is to "offer employment opportunities for young school leavers who have nothing to do and (to)...
(Mail & Guardian 06/11/13)
Malawi's popular gospel musician Joseph Alfazema has quit his singing career, at least for now, for a job as an unskilled agricultural labourer in South Korea where he hopes to earn "lots of dollars." He is among tens of thousands of Malawians soon to go to South Korea under a controversial employment scheme launched by Malawi's President Joyce Banda to beat joblessness in the impoverished southern African country suffering over 50% unemployment. Critics fear the downside of the plan could be "modern-day slavery". But Labour Minister Eunice Makangala has rubbished the fears telling Parliament recently that "it is not modern-day slavery". The president's plan is to "offer employment opportunities for young school leavers who have nothing to do and [to]...

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