NEW YEAR MESSAGE BY PRESIDENT PETER MUTHARIKA
‘We are a capable Nation’
Once again, the New Year is upon us. I wish you all Malawians a Happy and Prosperous New Year.
As we celebrate the year 2019, let us thank the Almighty God for His grace that allows us to live one year after another. We have survived the tough and lived the better times.
As we enter the New Year, I have one request to make to you all Malawians of goodwill. Let us continue every good work we have begun.
Let us continue working hard for our families. Family is what makes us what we are. Our prosperity begins from our family life. Let us first remember the love, care and tenderness of our families.
Let us continue working hard for our children – for our mothers and fathers, for our brothers and sisters. And let us show our families that we love our country; that we are people of high integrity; and that we are driven to prosper with hardwork.
Each one of us deserves a prosperous future if we work hard with discipline, dedication and determination! We all deserve to prosper with patriotism, integrity and hardwork.
As a nation, let us continue the good work we have begun for our country. One problem with us as a country is that we like destroying our own foundations.
Every time we begin progress in this country, we want to destroy it. That is what we did with Bingu! (May his soul rest in peace) We despised him! We demonized him! We conspired against him. We betrayed him. In no time, we turned round and said he was a good man.
But we can make Malawi a prosperous nation if we are consistent. We can develop this country if we continue on the path we have taken. So far, this country has taken the right direction to development.
Four years ago, our economy was broken. Our country was nearly bankrupt. Businesses were closing. But we fought out of the economic crisis. We fought national disasters of floods, drought and hunger.
Only four years ago, we found our economy suffering severe pains of mismanagement. We began with a crisis. Donors had withdrawn.
Inflation was high and prices were rising. Interest rates were high and the cost of borrowing was very high. Our currency was unstable and fragile. Businesses were failing. Poverty was rising. And suffering was growing.
Today, we have seen the economy improving. We can see more Malawians opening new businesses. More Malawians building better houses! We can see our quality of life improving.
Let me thank all officers and community leaders who are working to improve lives of women and Youth. Together, we have empowered women with village banks (banki mkhonde). Women can now start businesses and build houses for themselves.
Together, we are empowering households with social cash transfer and public works programs. We are touching lives in every way.
Everywhere, we can see Malawians buying cars more than ever because they have disposable income. We can see more and more Youths buying motorbikes because they can afford.
As a result, our Youths are saving lives because they can rush to hospital our mothers and fathers in the village whenever life is in danger.
As we move forward, we will continue taking rural communities out of darkness, bringing light to the people under rural electrification.
In the year that is ending, we have seen blackouts slowly coming to an end. I want to commend all those working so hard to reduce power shortage in this country. Blackouts will be history soon.
Today, we can see new roads everywhere. For the first time, we are seeing more people receiving piped water in rural communities. I believe every Malawian deserves a better life – everyone!
The world appreciates our efforts. All international reports show that Malawi is on the right track. Indeed, it is on record that we are over-performing in some areas. The world can see that Malawi is making progress from poverty to prosperity.
That is why the Millennium Challenge Corporation assessed our performance and found us eligible for the second compact. In fact, Malawi performed with an exceptional record.
We have achieved this rare feat because we delivered strongly on Control of Corruption, Government Effectiveness, Rule of Law, Primary Education Expenditure and Health Expenditure, among others.
That is why the World Justice Index Project ranked us among the top four best performers in sub-Sahara Africa in terms of Corruption fight and upholding of Rule of Law.
It is because we are on the right track that the Mo Ibrahim Index ranked us among the top 10 countries in Africa on good governance.
It is because we are on the right track that the Commitment to Reducing Inequality (CRI) Index ranked us among top 10 countries in the world and one of the only two countries in Africa that are committed to progressive taxation system.
The world appreciates our efforts. And many Malawians now agree that we can show progress.
Not long ago, the World Bank named us one of the world’s 10 most improved economies when it comes to reforms that make it easier to do business.
The world knows that we are doing the right things with our economy. That is why from 2015, the IMF has consistently given us a high rating for our economic performance. The IMF is confident that we are economically over-performing as a country. The latest 2018 IMF Report says it all.
As we move into the year 2019, let us believe in ourselves as a nation. We now know that we are a capable nation. We know we can take this nation to greater heights. We have shown that we can make it. And we can do it because we believe we can!
As we move into the year 2019, we have a choice to make. We have a choice to continue the development we have begun or to destroy the foundations we have built.
The year 2019 is a Year of Elections. It is a year we will decide the fate of this country. The fate of this nation lies in the decision you and I will make this year. This is the year will make a better Malawi or destroy our country.
Let me appeal to you all Malawians. Let us go into the 2019 campaign with peace, love and unity.
Elections come and go. But this country will remain our country. This Election, this campaign will come to pass. But you and I will remain Malawians.
Let us agree to practice civilized politics in the spirit of peace, love and unity. Let us reject politics of castigation. Reject politics of hate. Let us learn to forgive one another. Beyond politics, we are all Malawians.
Let us reject smear campaigns. Say NO to savage politics of rudeness. Say NO to politics of lies!
Time has come for us to rise above petty politics. Time has come for us to put Malawi first.
Malawians want us to focus on solving the long term problems of this country. Malawians are tired of suffering in poverty. Malawians want us to compete on our policies and programs.
Let us listen to the voice of the people.
Together, we must continue on our path to make Malawi a great country.
I wish you all a Prosperous and Happy New Year.
May God Bless you all
God Bless Malawi