Government announced through the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning in November last year of the grant, news which drew mixed reactions, especially on the authenticity of the grant.
But speaking during a 2023/24 Budget Consultation meeting Wednesday morning in Lilongwe, Minister of Finance and Economic Planning Sosten Alfred Gwengwe, who allegedly signed the grant, shocked the nation with revelations that nobody signed the said agreement.
Responding to a question posed on why the government says 2023/24 National Budget will need a lot of money despite announcing the $6.8 billion grant, Gwengwe made it clear that there is a need to focus on real issues, describing the grant issue as nonsense.
“Kulibe anasayinira kuti kwabwera ndalama 6.8 billion chani-chani-chani, that is just nonsense, the real issues are the ones we are talking about. Osati kudzangosewera kuti Bridgin Foundation, eh chani-chani-chani that’s nonsense, put it aside. The real question is, can we have a budget that balances,” Gwengwe said.
Gwengwe’s remarks have caused a public uproar, as people continue losing trust in the Tonse Alliance-led government.
The development comes at a time Affordable Input Program (AIP) has faced many glitches as more than 75% of eligible farmers are yet to access fertilizer despite the government’s assurance on the availability of the commodity in all set depots