…Saudi officials busy with Israel-Hamas fight
…fundraising for 2025 campaign
…70 people, party officials draw allowances
President Lazarus Chakwera shocked Malawians by flying out to Saudi Arabia, after the country announced the 11 November Arab-Africa summit had been cancelled early Wednesday morning, a trip which exposed Malawi Head of State to public ridicule.
Saudi Arabia, according to our findings sent an invitation to President Chakwera through the African Union and the side events included the signing of the Mangochi Makanjila road by the Ministers of Finance and Transport on Saturday 11 November.
President Chakwera’s insistence to fly into Riyadh reflects his continued confused foreign policy after he had sided with Israel in the ongoing fight with Hamas in the Palestinian strip of Gaza. He is an ardent supporter of Israel that among his first foreign policy announcement included intentions to open the Malawi embassy in disputed Jerusalem.
“The fact that he jumps into the plane to Saudi Arabia just shows how confused his foreign policy priorities are. Either he just loves being in the plane or simply he is clueless. The Saudi’s announced cancellation of the summit, all decent Heads of States have cancelled their trips,” said a senior former Malawi Ambassador.
In an interview monitored on MBC TV, President Chakwera did not mention the Saudi-Africa summit that Information Minister Moses Kunkuyu had been peddling on national radio and television instead he spoke of the Makanjila road as his priority for the trip.
“The road will open up the agricultural potential of the area and will in turn be able to export and industrialise our nation,” said Chakwera on departure, he did not say he is attending any summit.
Saudi Arabia Ministry of Foreign Affairs said the 5th Arab-Africa summit which was supposed to take place on Saturday 11th November 2023 had been postponed.
The Saudi leaders will instead on Saturday chair an emergency session of the Arab Heads of States and Leaders on Saturday 11 November and on Sunday the 12th it will host an extra ordinary summit of Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC).
“It is clear that Saudis will be busy with the summits that are their foreign policy priority, the President should have taken a higher ground and cancel his participation to a meeting now obviously is not the host priority. Thats what statesmen with self respect do. But the gentleman at State House loves flying around,” said another official.
The President is flying with 70 people and some of them MCP officials in what insiders claim is a fundraising strategy for 2025 General elections.
“He won’t stop flying, he meets well wishers and the officials get their campaign money,” said an official on the trip.
The President will on Monday travel to Egypt for a Trade Fair before returning on Tuesday.
This is his 44th foreign trip breaking all previous records of five Presidents before him.
We will keep updating the story as it happens.