Presidential Powers’ Reduction Overdue-Says Legal, Governance Expert
Legal and governance expert Justin Dzonzi says President Lazarus Chakwera’s commitment to reduce presidential powers is long overdue and prays responsible state agencies will facilitate this process with speed.
Various stakeholders including human rights campaigners, legal experts as well as members of the public have been calling for the reduction of some of the powers of the president such as the appointment of heads of some government and oversight institutions.
Speaking after being inaugurated on Monday, President Chakwera pledged to enhance good governance in his administration and that he will be leading by example.
“As required by law I will make a full declaration of my assets each year, I will go to parliament to be questioned by the people about my handling of state affairs, I will propose legislation to reduce the powers of the presidency and empower institutions to operate independently including parliament and the Anti-Corruption Bureau,” said Chakwera.
And in an interview with Zodiak, Dzonzi says if this is done, it shall be key to Malawi’s democratization process.
“It is important that it has come from the president’s mouth because if you have noticed, much of the legislative or constitutional reforms in Malawi fail predominantly because a president is not interested in overseeing such reforms,” said Dzonzi.
He added that if state agencies moved faster to facilitate the changes are effected, it would go a long way to freeing institutions such as parliament and the Anti-Corruption Bureau while also emphasizing that reduction of presidential powers will ensure that a leader is not abusing his powers.