Malawi: Chakwera Promises Defence Force Soldiers Improved Living Conditions

President Dr Lazarus Chakwera says his government remains committed to improve the living conditions of men and women in uniform in the country.

Chakwera, who is the Commander-in-Chief of Malawi Armed Forces said this on Saturday in Salima when he presided over the graduation of senior officers’ senior command and staff at the Malawi Defence Force Command and Staff College.

President Chakwera said that soldiers put themselves in danger while defending the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the country and therefore must be guaranteed the greatest support.

Said President Chakwera: “I and my administration will continue giving the MDF the support and resources it needs to move closer and closer to the realisation of our vision to build an appropriately sized, highly trained, and suitably equipped military force.”

The Malawi leader Chakwera also called for self-discipline from the soldiers in service in order to maintain the good image of the country’s army, which has been exceptionally good from time immemorial.

“If we are going to move this country forward at great speed and in every sector, each of us must demand more from ourselves than is even demanded of us by our superiors. There is a term for this attitude. It’s called self-discipline,” he said.

Chakwera added: “There are many citizens in our nation who have the ability to do great things if there is someone around to discipline them, but great nations are built by the citizens who know how to do great things by disciplining themselves.

“Self-discipline is the one resource we desperately need as a nation, more than money, more than infrastructure, more than food, more than forex, and more than fuel.”

The President also emphasized that what Malawi is lacking to move forward is the lack self-discipline, a thing he said needs to change.

“So our task now is to turn the self-discipline we see in our military and in these graduating officers into a national contagion that spreads like a virus to all corners and sectors of Malawi.

Self-discipline, I tell you, is what we need more than anything else to build a new Malawi,” president Chakwera said.

Speaking earlier, Malawi Defence Force commander, General Vincent Nundwe appealed to government for more support on capacity building on human resource management.

“We ask the government to continue supporting us. We are here graduating our senior officers on strategic management studies for the first time and we are very proud of our soldiers for their commitment and dedication to the call of duty for the past 46 weeks,” said General Nundwe.

Nundwe said, in the past the Malawian soldiers were doing the staff command course outside the country which he described as “very expensive.”

“Over the years, we used to do this course outside Malawi and the cost to train one soldier is equivalent to training 10 soldiers at home. We therefore ask for more support from the government in order for us to build our capacity to the highest grade and among the best in the world.

At least 20 Malawi Defence Force senior staff officers, drawn from the Malawi Army, Air Force and Marine Forces, attended the course which was conducted in partnership Malawi University of Science and Technology (MUST) graduated with postgraduate diploma in strategic management studies.

MUST vice chancellor, Professor Address Malata thanked the Malawi Defence Force leadership for trusting her institution with such a huge responsibility to be part of the senior officers training programme.

Former president Joyce Banda as well as Leader of Opposition, Kondwani Nankhumwa and former and retired Malawi Defence Force generals and senior officers attended the ceremony.

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