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Malawi: Chakwera Says He Has No Power to Implement All Campaign Promises

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President Dr. Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera on Monday asked Malawians to stop demanding unrealistic things from the Executive Branch of the Government, stressing that the constitution does not give the presidency absolute power over government machinery.

Chakwera reminded the citizenry that he swore to preserve and defend the Malawi Constitution, without fear or favour, and that will continue doing so.

He made the sentiments on Monday in his official address at the first-ever National Conference on Separation of Powers at the Bingu International Convention Center (BICC) in Lilongwe.

Chakwera expressed disappointment with the wrong and unrealistic expectations from some Malawians whom he says do not clearly know the functions of the President as stipulated by the Constitution.

Chakwera said it is weird and strange to have some people expect him to govern the country the same way it was during one party system.

“In everyday discourse, people expect ‘kuyendetsa Boma, which has a connotation or metaphor of a driver who has an absolute control of a machine. But the reality is that the function of a President is similar to that of a traffic police officer who controls the flow of machines but does not have absolute or full control of the machines,” he said.

Chakwera further told the conference that he has on several occasions received calls for his individual favours let alone being intimidated by people who don’t agree to his government policies but stated that in all situations, he chose to respect and protect the constitution.

He said some expectations that most Malawians continue to have from him and his government are brim with elements of one party system.

He, however, challenged participants of the conference to regard the forum as a “teaching moment” for everyone and also an enabler of the country’s second long-term national development plan, the Malawi 2063.

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