Karonga South Member of Parliament (MP) Malani Mtonga (People’s Party-PP) made a rare praise of President Peter Mutharika in Parliament saying he was a “God-sent leader” who his visionary to develop Malawi beyond recognition.
“Let me thank God for giving us leaders in Malawi at such times like this. The President, you as the Speaker of this House from Karonga Nyungwe and the Chief Justice Nyirenda from Usisya, taking these high offices of leadership is something that people of Karonga also appreciate. They do appreciate because you are visionary leaders. It is very important to note that you are not there on your own but it was the finger of God that pointed you. When God’s finger is upon you, no man, no devil and no hell can remove you,” said Mtonga who is also a preacher and former religious adviser to late president Bingu wa Mutharika.
Mtonga cited the Holy Bible that “where there is no vision, people perish,” saying President Mutharika had a vision o ensure food security when he said that no one is going to die of hunger in Malawi.
“Mr Speaker, Sir, in this House, we stood and said we should sell maize outside the country. It was an element of lack of vision that we were showing by asking the State President to sell maize outside because by now, we could have been in problems,” he said.
Mtonga said Mutharika’s visionary leadership had that foresight to see that at such a time like this, Malawi will need maize.
“Those with vision are people who put the nation like Malawi first unlike those without the vision who put their own needs and interest first. We see the President putting Malawi first because we have seen a number of things that are happening,” he said.
But Mtonga’s statement attracted point of order from Rumphi East MP Kamlepo Kalua (PP) who asked why Church and Bible issues are being discussed instead of Mid-Term Budget Review Statement.
But Speaker Richard Msowoya said he is not a development economist and that Mtonga could be speaking “from the point of view of his professional upbringing. I would not argue.”
Continuing with his remarks, Mtonga said without vision one cannot see that the construction projects like Nkhata Bay Road, Rumphi-Hewe Road, and the Njakwa-Livingstonia.
Another MCP legislator, Juliana Lunguzi of Dedza East also stood to seek “clarification.”
She asked: “ Is he talking about ‘vision’ to see or ‘vision’ to foresee because he may be confusing the two. Which vision is he talking about? This is so because talking of the Nkhata Bay Road, one would use ‘vision’ as in what you see and not the other way round. So, which is which?”
And Richard Chimwendo Banda MCP MP for Dowa East asked if it was in order for Mtonga to “contradict” with the Minister of Transport and Public Works Jappie Mhango who talked about mobilising resources and contractors for the Rumphi-Hewe Road and yet the MP is saying the road is under construction.
“ Who should we listen to, the Minister or the man with a vision? “ asked Chmwendo Banda.
The Speaker said: “I think, here you must listen to the man with a vision because in this particular case the vision is looking forward and that is what the Minister said; they are mobilising.”
But PP’s Mzimba South MP, Maquenda Chunga, said he was “surprised” that legislators were “despising the man of God.”
He said: “The bible says; do not despise the man of God, otherwise you will perish. Therefore, I just want to remind the man of God that the Jenda-Edengeni Road should also be put on the list too because he has visions and dreams.”
Speaker ruled Chunga out of order, saying the august House has “ Honourable Members of Parliament and not men of God. “
Continuing with his contribution, Mtonga said Chunga has got a vision and is able to see that the Jenda-Edingeni Road is among the infrastructural developments to be carried out by the Mutharika administration.
“Mr Speaker, Sir, without a vision you cannot see that the Liwonde-Mangochi and Chingale roads are under construction and if you cannot see it now it is because of lack of vision.
“Mr Speaker, Sir, it is only lack of vision when you put your interest first at the expense of other people’s interest more especially when you begin to refuse others of what they are supposed to get. For instance, people of my constituency have been crying all along for water and under this visionary leadership of Professor Arthur Peter Mutharika donors made sure that water should be provided to the people of Bundi, Hangarawe and Rozya. And without vision, somebody came here and said, no, to water for the people of Karonga, especially Hangarawe, Bundi and Khwawa. Therefore, people of Karonga South are in need of water and it is our hope that through this visionary leadership under Professor Author Peter Mutharika our wish is going to be fulfilled,” said Mtonga.
Mtonga said he asked government to provide electricity in his Karonga South constituency and thanked the Mutharika administration for providing electricity at Rozya, Khwawa and Hangarawe.
“As I am talking, they are busy putting poles to put more electricity at Thunduti going to Fuliwa and this is undeniable work of a visionary leader.,” he said.
He prayed that people of Karonga are provided with a community day secondary at Chankhalonde asked government to consider gravelling a road from Uliwa via Mabalani to Jiti.
“I would like to pray that this visionary leadership of the Professor Peter Mutharika will continue and move on to take out Malawi from the deep poverty levels that we are in, as of now,” said Mtonga.