Mutharika not attending AU Summit as cost-cutting measure

State President of the Republic of Malawi Professor Arthur Peter Mutharika is not attending the 29th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the Heads of State and Government of the African Union.

Presidential Press Secretary and Spokesperson Mgeme Kalilani told the media on Monday that cancellation of the President’s trip to Ethiopia for the Summit, was a result of the austerity measures as government wants to reduce frequent internal and external travels of the Head of State and Cabinet ministers.

“I can confirm that the President is not going to the summit,” said Presidential press secretary and spokesman Mgeme Kalilani.

Reports are indicating that Malawi is going to be represented at the summit by its envoy in Addis Ababa, Chimango Chirwa.

The two-day summit opens Monday under the theme, “Harnessing the Demographic Dividend through Investment in the Youth.”

It would examine cross-cutting issues affecting African economies and the opportunities and options that could be exploited for continental transformation.

Significant among the issues likely to be discussed at the meeting include continental trade, AU reforms, peace and security, funding for the AU, and youth empowerment.mbc