The UK and the USA took to task Malawi President Bingu wa Mutharika blaming him for the current political and economic problems the southern African nation is facing.
Malawi lost an IMF programme last year, and its key donors have been withholding balance of payment support since January last year.
Mutharika, said on arrival from Addis Ababa, that he met UK’s Secretary for State for International Development Andrew Mitchell and USA Assistant Secretary of State Johnnie Carson who told him that he was the problem.
“I told them I am not the problem, I am the solution. It is sad how Malawians have turned from being honest people. They even lied how I voted at the African Union for the Chairmanship,” said Mutharika.
Mutharika has been facing the heat from the British who stopped balance of payment support last year and the US who are withholding a $350 million energy grant over human rights concerns and restrictive laws.
“I listened to their concerns and I took an opportunity to explain what we are doing about all the issues. What is sad is that people from here continue telling lies. When I said that the devil is sitting on some of you, it is clear from the lies that you create,” said Mutharika.
He said Carson told him that the resumption of the suspended Millennium Challenge Account funding for rehabilitation of electricity supply system was dependent on the resumption of the IMF programme.
“We are in dialogue with the IMF and I have assured them all that their concerns will be addressed. We have set up commissions of inquiry, we have a team on dialogue and I am asking what next do you want me to do,” said the President.
This was a sudden departure from his earlier comments that he will not devalue the kwacha, one of the most immediate issues the Fund want addressed.
The IMF wants Malawi devalues the kwacha to help stem a growing black-market which is hurting the economy.
The aid freeze, low earnings from tobacco have worsened the shortage of forex in Malawi. This has resulted into massive fuel shortages across the country and forced government to revise it GDP and inflation figures downwards.
Mutharika has blamed the devil for all what Malawi is going through.