Throughout the month of February, BBC World Service is giving a chance to its African listeners a chance to present a presidential inaugural address. These addresses are aired daily on their Network Africa programmes. As an avid listener of this program i sent out my speech and i thought of publishing it on this blog. Read it below:
PRESIDENT FOR A DAY
Let me start by thanking all the people who voted for me to this position of President of the Republic of Malawi. It was not an easy thing to compete with all the candidates who gave out a spirited challenge. In the same breath I would like to extend my invitation to all the losing candidates to join me in leading Malawi for the next five years. I have read all the manifestos you presented during campaign and there are several things which when added to our manifesto will help the people of Malawi. I have delayed in choosing my cabinet waiting for the response from the other presidential aspirants and their parties. It is for our benefit as Malawians. United we stand divided we fall!!
I have titled my speech”Rebuilding Malawi” simply because that is the only thing that we can do to make it a better place to live. Our country is in ruins because of the type of leadership we have had in the past years. There is a problem with our economy. Yes, we are making strides on paper but people are still suffering in the villages. Our education system is in tatters and needs to be attended if we are to build a better Malawi. I know that most of the people gracing this inaugural ceremony are unemployed; I will work to create more jobs.
As a country we have a lot of resources which, if shared properly, can be enough for everyone. The first step to make this a reality is to limit the amount of allowances given to public servants. Imagine a President is at liberty to have millions and millions of Kwachas in bank accounts at the expense of a farmer in Nsanje. Ministers, Members of Parliament and Principal Secretaries are driving posh vehicles disregarding the people they are supposed to serve. I seek to end this!! I know there some who are hard working and deserve to have riches but there are others who are just abusing taxpayer’s money. They are where they are because of your votes and taxes while you are still suffering!!
When a person has basic needs in life and is happy that’s when we can involve him in developmental activities. We will only talk of infrastructure development when we share the national cake equally. When every home is able to feed itself, send children to school and have a good house. You all pay tax in one way or another so you should enjoy being a Malawian and using Malawian resources. When choosing my cabinet, I will look for people who are selfless, who are prepared to lead and not to be worshipped. I need people who will be on the ground to understand people’s problems and find a way to sort them.
In rebuilding Malawi we need good roads, railways and a thriving water transport. We don’t have time to waste and every minute, every person (ruling or opposition) counts. As long as you are a Malawian we need you, your ideas and any type of contribution you can make. You have been ignored for too long and now time has come to take part in rebuilding Malawi to your satisfaction. We have wise people in the villages that have been sidelined simply because they had no resources to compete with the rich in elections. We need you now!!
I also want to find an alternative to our economy’s reliance on agriculture. As much as we are proud of being farmers, little progress is made to our economy. Our forefathers used to farm on the same land we are using now but only a few things developed. We are going the same route that the previous regimes had stumbled. They had to rely on the rain pattern and prices of our farm produce. Do we have to make the same mistake? NO!! There is a lot we can do to earn foreign currency, technology for instance. My fellow Malawians things are changing; people are making a lot of money out of technology. If we embrace technology we can make a lot of money for the country. We need to teach our children right from the nursery school through to the colleges. Only then will we be able to find foreign currency using others means apart from agriculture.
In closing I would like to remind you that together we can build a better Malawi. My presidency is your presidency, be proud of it. At the end of the day it is all of us (Malawians) who will be winners and we will retire happily knowing that we have secured a future for the coming generations.…..VIVA MALAWI