In 2015, Malawi was led by President Peter Mutharika and the government was divided into three branches; executive, legislative and judicial. The executive branch was composed of the President, Prime Minister and Council of Ministers. The Prime Minister acted as head of government and appointed ministers responsible for various policy areas. The legislative branch consisted of two chambers; the National Assembly and Senate. Both chambers were elected by citizens in a general election held every five years. The judicial branch included a Supreme Court, High Courts, Regional Courts and other courts with specialized jurisdiction. See ehealthfacts for Malawi in the year of 2005.
The political system in Malawi is considered semi-authoritarian given the lack of political freedoms for citizens who are not part of the ruling party or its allies. This means that freedom of speech, assembly and association are all restricted to varying degrees depending on which region or party is in power at any given time. In addition to this, corruption is still a major problem in Malawi with allegations of bribery being common place in both private businesses as well as government institutions. Despite these issues, however, it is important to note that Malawi has been making progress over recent years with regards to its democratic development since 2015 particularly through initiatives such as decentralizing power away from the central government to local governments and increasing access to education for all citizens.
Malawi. During the rainy season in January, the country was hit by severe floods that forced hundreds of thousands of people to leave their homes. The floods hit the southern parts of the country worst, including the capital Lilongwe. According to COUNTRYAAH, Lilongwe is the capital of Malawi which is located in Eastern Africa. The situation was so serious that the government announced a state of emergency and called for international assistance. Winding roads and bridges made it difficult for the authorities to reach out with assistance to the residents.
- Also see AbbreviationFinder.org for Malawi country abbreviations, including geography, history, economy and politics.
In May, well-known journalist and press freedom activist Raphael Tenthani died in a car accident. Tenthani, who has worked as both local reporter and correspondent for the news agency AP and the BBC, was especially noted for his sharp chronicles in the local newspaper Sunday Times under the signature “The Muckraker”.
During the year, several corruption scandals were discovered in large companies, including the Danish beer manufacturer Carlsberg, which has been active in Malawi since the 1960s. In August, Carlsberg was warned by the government that the company had not done enough to prevent polluted wastewater from being discharged into the Nankhaka River. Several international companies are engaged in production around the important Nankhaka River, where water quality has deteriorated significantly in recent years. The reason is said that companies do not purify wastewater from chemicals and other residual products before it is released into the water, which many residents use daily. Last year, demonstrations were held against the emissions, and Carlsberg and several companies promised improvement.
Former Army Chief Henry Odillo and his closest husband were arrested in November accused of being involved in the so-called Cashgate tavern discovered in 2013.
In December, the band Zomba Prison Project, consisting of sixteen interns at one of the country’s most notorious prisons, was nominated for an American Grammy for a record in the world music category.
In the early 21st century. the President of the Republic B. Muluzi, elected in 1994 and confirmed in 1999, conferred an increasingly personal and authoritarian imprint on his power, with frequent reshuffles of the government structure, while the fight against widespread and rooted corruption was often used in an instrumental way to regulate relations between the various interest groups. Failing the attempt to modify the Constitution to be able to present himself for the third time (2002), Muluzi supported, in the presidential consultations of May 2004, the candidacy of the minister of the economy of his government, B. wa Mutharika. The latter, supported by his party, the United Democratic Front (UDF), and by the Alliance for Democracy (AFORD), was elected with 35.9 % of the votes, against 25.7 % of J. Tembo, supported by the Malawi Congress Party (MCP), and 25.7 % of G. Chakuamba, candidate of the Mgwirizano Coalition (MC), an aggregation of various parties. A highly fragmented vote emerged from the contextual legislative elections: 56 seats out of 193 went to the MCP, 49 to the UDF, 25 to the MC, 6 to the FORD and 39to independent candidates. Contrary to expectations, however, the new president refused the role of close ally of Muluzi (who had retained a solid base of power in the state apparatus), and tried to assert his autonomy and build personal support in Parliament, until to abandon the UDF (February 2005) and to found (March) a new party, the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), while its initiatives in the fight against corruption opened a very hard confrontation with the UDF and the MCP, which in June 2005 it culminated in a request for impeachment against him, on charges of violation of the Constitution. The extreme political conflict thus paralyzed the life of a country already fragile in its democratic structures, as evidenced by the low participation in the vote in the various electoral appointments.