Tuesday, December 09, 2014

Like following American politics by only reading Breitbart

As I mentioned last May, a former professor of mine is now the President of Malawi. I also happen to have a friend of Facebook who is Malawian and who hates President Mutharika. So my FB news feed has a regular sampling of post that are critical of the one head of state in the world that I happen to know personally. Those anti-Mutharika links is how I regularly follow Malawian politics these days, even as I recognize that the posts are presenting a pretty slanted view of how the president is doing. (Besides, how anti-free press can President Mutharika be if the Malawian press keeps publishing these critical editorial pieces that my Malawian friend keeps posting on FB?)

Today, she posted a link to this opinion piece from the Nyasa Times. Among the long list of Mutharika administration malfeasance, this one allegation jumped out at me:
Then there is the issue of a President dressed in Santa regalia and dishing out K50 000 visions to journalists right within the precincts of the presidential palace--the very symbol of power and moral leadership. The outcome was a mess and the fallout, again, handled without a clue.
Did that really happen? Did Peter Mutharika put on a Santa costume and hand out money to journalists in the Presidential palace? (50,000 Malawian Kwacha equals about $100 US). I can't find any other news source other than this editorial reporting that story. It is very hard to imagine my former professor doing this. If anyone can find any other account (ideally a straight news story, not an editorial), it would be greatly appreciated.