Malawi’s President Bingu Wa Mutharika has warned that he will not hesitate to take action against former President Bakili Muluzi if Muluzi continues to take what Mutharika calls a swipe at him. President Mutharika blames the former president for being behind the failed impeachment proceedings against him. Mutharika said he began having problems with the former president when Muluzi tried to influence who gets into his cabinet.
President Mutharika’s press secretary, Chikumbutso Mtumodzi says Mutharika believes in unifying the country.
“The President of the Republic of Malawi believes that there is the need to have unity and at the same time to play politics of inclusion. He does not believe in a system, whereby the winner takes all. So in the last two years or so, he (Mutharika) has become a victim of maligning and sarcastic remarks by the former President Bakili Muluzi,” he said.
Mtumodzi says President Mutharika is fed up with all the attacks he has been subjected to.
“He said, ‘Enough is enough.’ He is also going to play politics, because when Mr. Muluzi arrived from England instead of dwelling on issues related to his party and development, he went personal against the President of the Republic of Malawi,” Mtumodzi noted.
He denied speculations that President Mutharika has a personal grudge with Muluzi.
“The president has got nothing personal against former president Bakili Muluzi. And he has actually made it public, and at the same time he has said that he is very much willing to open doors, whereby there can be reconciliation and then work together. But the problem with Muluzi is that from the word go, he actually told the president that his son, Atopele Muluzi should be appointed as the Minister of Finance and Foreign Minister,” he said.
Mtumodzi reiterated President Mutharika’s frustration with Muluzi.
“Muluzi wanted President Mutharika to make available to him a presidential convoy. A convoy, which is the same like that of the sitting president. He wanted to rule with a remote control. That is why President Mutharika made it clear that there can only be one president at a time,” he said.
Mtumodzi said Malawians were not coerced to vote for President Mutharika.
“The people of Malawi are intelligent. They have got the right to make their own informed decisions. There is no way that the people of Malawi could have actually voted for President Mutharika just because of Muluzi. President Mutharika won, and he was voted into office as an individual person and won on merit,” he said.
Mtumodzi dismissed the notion that President Mutharika lives under the shadow of Muluzi.
“The notion, or the assumption that President Mutharika came to office because of Muluzi is false and unfounded. Dr. Mutharika has worked as an international diplomat and everybody knows that. There is no way that Dr, Muluzi can claim that President Mutharika lives under his shadow, so the assumption that Muluzi enhances Mutharika’s chances is false and preposterous,” he said.