Op-ed; Chisa Mbele v Kelvin Sulugwe on Covid-19 funds – ‘Chakwera is doomed’

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Sulungwe (L) and Chisa Mbele

OP-ED (MalawiTalk) – Entrepreneur  and social media activist Mr Joshua Chisa Mbele has exchanged opinion with Mr Kelvin Sulugwe a PR official for Malawi Congress Party (MCP)  over  management of Covid-19 response funds. Chisa Mbele is known on Facebook for his no holds barred opinion despite and is UTM Party member which Sulugwe belonged until after the fresh presidential elections when he realigned to MCP. Here are the exchanges.

Joshua Chisa Mbele writes:

Dear Kelvin Sulugwe,

I read your status but decided not to make an in-line comment rather  make a stand-alone argument.

You raised pertinent issues. Straight to the point:

  1. To understand the gravity of the K6.2 billion, you ought to get rid of politics out of the way.
  2. Deploy tools you learned in business school if you specialized in Public Administration.
  3. Sanitize with Common Sense whose tenets are moral obligation, sincerity and truthfulness at all material times.
  4. President Chakwera fails the test. He has exposed himself to lack Public Administration Skills and Experiences.
  5. An Element of Dishonest is raring its head.

He has put himself in a CATCH-22 SITUATION. He is doomed whatever he touches. Time delay has hanged him.

The K6.2 billion was a timely and commendable intervention of the new Tonse Administration. It was a matter of Life n Death.

Unfortunately, he failed dismally.

People have died who would have survived if only the money was used appropriately. Only if it went to buy essentials for the hospitals. Thus if they took care of the Healthcare workers and Patients.

It took one patient in his deathbed to raise an alarm at KCH. Oxygen Alarm. Msoma died. Many others have died.

Then President Office started responding to our queries by issuing MISLEADING STATEMENTS.

That’s Dishonesty

Which Expenditure Reports were sent for Audit on 1st February?

Then His Office issued another MISLEADING STATEMENT which purported that few had not submitted the Reports. As of now, we know nobody gave any report.

Here is the problematic situation. When President Chakwera addressed the nation on 17th January and gave figures on how K6.2 billion was used, where did he get those numbers without the Expenditure Reports.

By his own admission, as per yesterday official communication, he is now going through the Expenditure Reports and he will address the nation.

Do you understand the seriousness of this matter?

Public Money. People’s lives lost. He is here playing games.

It has boiled to one demand: Yalulani Mphasa Tione yemwe wakodza.

His closer political allies became suppliers of goods and services. Money was mercilessly looted.

Did he know or He didn’t?

Whichever answer he gives, Chakwera is doomed. As a leader, he failed the people. He should have been in the driving seat at all material times.

Did he know that some of the Cabinet Ministers and his eminent members of Presidential Taskforce came with companies as conduits to steal the money?

Here is another anomaly.

Why was Vice President Saulos Chilima sidelined in all this?

Answer: Rats 🐀 do fight over Cheese 🧀

Jealous and Greed gripped the Department of Disaster Management Affairs.

Tisathe Mau. Mwakula Mwatha. Tiona kuti mutani.

Sulungwe (L) and Chisa Mbele

Then Mr Kelvin Sulugwe responds

Dear Joshua Chisa Mbele

I read your status too and just like you, I also decided not to make an in-line comment rather than make a stand-alone argument.

You equally raised pertinent issues.

I will look at each point, from the very first one. Here we go.

  1. To understand the gravity of the K6.2 billion, you ought to get rid of politics out of the way.

Response: I agree with you. Lets get politics out of this issue and when you do that you will see that the president is standing on an honest ground. He is equally disgusted by the narrative on the MK6.2 billion. His body language and anger says it all. I have no doubt that he will smoke out everyone involved.

  1. Deploy tools you learned in business school if you specialized in Public Administration.

Response: It’s exactly what I am doing. Please understand, its not all that time that assignments from different students present same arguments, but I assure you, we are both arguing from a holy ground.

  1. Sanitize with Common Sense whose tenets are moral obligation, sincerity and truthfulness at all material times.

Response: There are times you and I have agreed and there are also times when we have disagreed. Every evidence points to the fact that money (MK6.2 billion) was indeed stolen, but nothing points to the presidency, apart from the usual political prejudice. We are living in an age of digital misinformation, one needs to thoroughly examine what is presented.

  1. President Chakwera fails the test. He has exposed himself to lack Public Administration Skills and Experiences.

Response: Depends on how you are looking at the coin. To me, a person who admits something is wrong and works towards correcting such wrongs is a man of wisdom and led by the holy spirit. It was not an easy thing for the president to come back and agree with you and me that indeed, the figures he presented earlier are of questionable nature. Hear this, being a leader does not mean you will stop thievery before it is done (unless its prophetic leadership). Lets judge him on how he will deal with perpetrators, but not judging him in anticipation of administration failure.

  1. An Element of Dishonesty is rearing its head.

Response: We are learning.

… then you also said and I quote:”He has put himself in a CATCH-22 SITUATION. He is doomed whatever he touches. Time delay has hanged him.”

Response: You can’t predict doom to a person trying hard to get to the bottom of an issue at hand. This is the presidency, it deals with alot of pressing issues. This MK6.2 billion is just but a small fish in the sea. Predicting or declaring doom on him is morally unfair. Do not be determined to see him fail.

“The K6.2 billion was a timely and commendable intervention of the new Tonse Administration. It was a matter of Life and Death. Unfortunately, he failed dismally.”

Response: I have responded above.

“People have died who would have survived if only the money was used appropriately. Only if it went to buy essentials for the hospitals. Thus if they took care of the Healthcare workers and Patients.”

Response: That’s why he is angry and doing all he can to smoke out those involved. But like you said, “To understand the gravity of the K6.2 billion, you ought to get rid of politics out of the way.”

“It took one patient in his deathbed to raise an alarm at KCH. Oxygen Alarm. Msoma died. Many others have died.”

Response: I was among the few individuals magnifying late Paul Msoma’s plea for oxygen. His calls led to the birth of citizen response that has been largely spearheaded by Onjezani Kenani. Msoma was a good man, a patriotic citizen who fought hard for the Tonse Administration. Please, let him rest in peace. His name should not be dragged to politics of castigating each other.

“Then the President Office started responding to our queries by issuing MISLEADING STATEMENTS. That’s Dishonesty”

Response: We will wait for the final reports, but like I said, a dishonesty man would not come back to agree with you and me.

“Which Expenditure Reports were sent for Audit on 1st February?”

Response: I am equally waiting to hear it. The president has given a directive on that.

“Then His Office issued another MISLEADING STATEMENT which purported that few had not submitted the Reports. As of now, we know nobody gave any report.”

Response: I am not privileged to reports that are received by his office. If you are, you will tell us more. So nobody submitted anything?

“Here is the problematic situation. When President Chakwera addressed the nation on 17th January and gave figures on how K6.2 billion was used, where did he get those numbers without the Expenditure Reports.”

Response: We have been on this issue above.

“By his own admission, as per yesterday official communication, he is now going through the Expenditure Reports and he will address the nation.”

Response: Which he requested after observing that something is wrong. I am glad he is working. Imagine if he was not doing anything about it?

“Do you understand the seriousness of this matter?”

Response: I do. Do you?

“Public Money. People’s lives are lost. He is here playing games. It has boiled to one demand: Yalulani Mphasa Tione yemwe wakodza.”

Response: Ndipo wakodzayo should be castrated.

“His closer political allies became suppliers of goods and services. Money was mercilessly looted. Did he know or He didn’t?”

Response: Since you seem to know more, tell us about it. Which close friends? Do you have a list of those companies? I pray you have such simple facts but if you are arguing from Facebook hearsay, then you need to be very careful. You have a name that people trust.

“Whichever answer he gives, Chakwera is doomed. As a leader, he failed the people. He should have been in the driving seat at all material times.”

Response: Prejudice. Judging him in anticipation of failure. Why are you so vested in creating a “failing Chakwera?”

“Did he know that some of the Cabinet Ministers and his eminent members of the Presidential Task Force came with companies as conduits to steal the money?”

Response: You repeated this point. My advice remains the same, make sure you are sure of what you are saying, don’t base it on Facebook hearsay. I know Facebook.

“Here is another anomaly. Why was Vice President Saulos Chilima sidelined in all this? Answer: Rats 🐀 do fight over Cheese 🧀 ”

Response: You asked me a question and you responded before I could answer. I don’t think you will value my answer if I go ahead and respond to this. I will let it pass.

“Jealous and Greed gripped the Department of Disaster Management Affairs.”

Response: I agree.

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