US Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken on Friday lauded Malawi’s strong democratic foundation and applauded President Lazarus Chakwera for his ongoing efforts to combat corruption.
Speaking at a meeting in Washington, DC, with the Malawian president, he expressed appreciation for the country’s democratic leadership and strong support for the principles of the UN and AU Charters, a statement by the US State Department said.
“We deeply appreciate the relationship, the partnership between the United States and Malawi, a remarkable democratic success story. The strong leadership of the president, particularly in pursuing important reforms, sends a very strong message not only in Malawi and the continent, but around the world,” Mr. Blinken said.
The statement said Mr. Blinken and President Chakwera also discussed plans to expand U.S. cooperation with the 16-member Southern African Development Community and to deepen U.S.-Malawi cooperation at the United Nations.
President Chakwera traced relations with the U.S. back to the African country’s independence in 1964, saying “it has been a long story of real partnership, collaboration, and help”.
He said in recent times Malawi’s democratic journey was maturing because of the partnership and encouragement from friends like the US.
President Chakwera said Malawi had carved out a vision for an inclusively wealthy, self-reliant nation by 2063. This has been divided wirth a plan for 10 years, and then recovery plans for three years because of COVID, which has really devastated the country.
He also referred to climate change issues, mentioning Cyclone Ana which left a trail of devastation and death, adding that what was happening in Europe now was of great concern.
“So all of these things, we count on our partners to help us with,” President Chakwera said.
He added: “We want to be able to develop in a way that says Malawians can have their dignity and their place in the sun, alongside other nations, because we have seen that collaboration is the way to go. Multilateralism is the way to go. We need to side with those who want justice, who want human rights. And we find that the U.S. is a great friend.”