Minister of finance Simplex Chithyola Banda has told Parliament that Malawi will have to make some tougher and painful decisions for the country’s economy to bounce back.
Banda was speaking in Parliament while delivering a statement on measures put in place to cushion Malawians following a 44% devaluation which was effected by the Reserve Bank of Malawi last week.
Responding to questions from Members of parliament, the finance minister noted that the system is to blame for the late devaluation which was supposed to be done some time back.
Meanwhile, Band failed to respond to some questions saying most of the answers will be given on Friday when he will be presenting the mid-year budget review.
“I know there are a lot of questions from you members of Parliament pertaining to what we are doing to alleviate Malawians from the burden of the devaluation but I don’t want to pre-empt what is in my mid year budge review statement slated for Friday this week.
“On Friday, you will have a clear picture on what we will do on a full scale moving forward,” said Banda.
However, Leader of Opposition in Parliament Kondwani Nankhumwa faulted the measures announced by the Minister of Finance saying they are not enough to protect ordinary Malawi how have already started feeling the pinch of the devaluation.
For instance, he wondered how this would work considering that the number of beneficiaries of social cash transfer and other incentives is very minimal while the devaluation is affected almost everyone.
According to Nankhumwa, the government should have designed a workable strategy targeting more people in rural and semi-urban areas of the country before the devaluation.
“This is worrisome because we are over 20 million in this country yet a handful of people are being targeted for social cash transfer and other incentives which are for the short term,” said Nankhumwa.
Meanwhile, leader of the house Richard Chimwendo Banda has defended President Lazarus Chakwera’s frequent foreign trips describing them crucial as they have helped Malawi to connect with various international donors willing to bail out the country from social economic challenges.
Banda told the house that the President Chakwera is not a globe trotter for nothing despite embarking on over 40 international trips in the three years he has been in office.