By Chalo Mvula
The Minister of Civic Education and National Unity Hon Timothy Mtambo has cautioned against politicising Cultural groups claiming its one element that deflates the spirit of national unity. He was speaking when he had a virtual discussion with several Malawians living in diaspora on Thursday evening at an event organised by Citizen for Transformation Movement (CFT) Diaspora Chapter.
The Minister said time has come that the identification of Malawi as one nation need to be promoted. He highlighted that while he is a big supporter of culture and cultural groups, he was saddened that political interference in these groups has been a catalyst in the promotion of tribalism. Mtambo said it will be idea to have these cultural groups come celebrate together at one big function either at Bingu stadium or somewhere else where each group showcases their culture and we celebrate together as Malawians. “Rather than have Mulhakho Wa Alomwe, Gonamapuhanya, Chiwanja Cha Ayawo and others do their things separately, why not have a single day which can be dubbed a cultural festival and let Malawians come and celebrate together. With that, not only will each heritage celebrate their culture, but we will celebrate together as Malawians and increase our bond as one nation called Malawi “Mtambo said.
Speaking on the challenges of promoting Unity in the country, Mtambo said Malawi has taken so long in recognizing Unity as a strong component of the country’s development. He revealed that his ministry has what he called Transformative civic education on top its agenda as they attempt to change the mindset and behaviour of Malawians “ My ministry will take government close to the people and people close to the government creating a platform for people and government to engage on issues of national importance”
Mtambo spoke highly of the promotion of values Malawi values citing that no one in the country should be discriminated based on religious, regional or tribal differences. “ If we believe in the constitution then we cannot discriminate each other as the constitution doesn’t discriminate” The Minister also announced that he will be working on what he described as a “ Respect the flag campaign” which will be aimed at making Malawians feel proud of their country , their identity and bringing sense of patriotism and allegiance to the flag,
When asked about the role of Citizen For Transformation (CFT) movement now that he is part of the government as a minister, he assured those in attendance that he is very much part of CFT. “CFT had a short term goal of removing DPP and a long term goal of creating a movement of the people for the people , so the movement will still stand for Malawians regardless of who is in power” He also announced that the movement will actively get involved in some charity activities to give a voice to the poor , resource mobilisations in order to support those in need.
Also speaking at the event, CFT Diaspora Commander Linda Khembo , thanked the Minister for making himself available to answer a few questions from Malawians in the diaspora , who despite being far from home , are still very much interested to be part of the policy changes and implementation.