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Malawi President sacks Agriculture Minister and his deputy

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Malawi is not immune to the challenge of unreliable ministers as President Lazarus Chakwera of Malawi has dismissed Agriculture Minister Lobin Lowe and his deputy, Madalitso Kambauwa Wirima, as a direct consequence of a significant fertilizer procurement incident in which the Malawi Government was defrauded of USD 725,000 (about K750 million).

 

At the Smallholder Farmers Fertilizer Revolving Fund Malawi (SFFRFM) depot in Lilongwe earlier on Tuesday, which happened to be his final job before being fired, the former agriculture minister Lowe saw the AIP fertilizer being offloaded.

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In his Tuesday evening speech to the country, President Chakwera announced that he had fired Lowe and Wirima for their “high incompetence and gross negligence in managing this year’s Affordable Inputs Programme (AIP).

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During his speech, the president made the following statement, “By powers vested in me I have relieved Minister of Agriculture and his deputy with immediate effect, there are serious problems in the agricultural sector which need to be fixed…I am not here to serve a party, alliance or a Minister, but I am here to serve Malawians…”.

Regarding their sudden termination and the allegations that followed it, Lobin Lowe and his deputy, Madalitso Kambauwa Wirima, have remained silent.

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Sam Kawale was subsequently named as the new agriculture minister by President Chakwera, who has also made it known that other changes to his cabinet are imminent.

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