Blantyre- Malawi (PANA) -- Malawi President Bingu wa Mutharika Thursday warned "o ver-expectant Malawians" that there would not be a "chunk of money flowing into t he country because we have assumed the chairmanship of the African Union," PANA r eported from here.
Since his election to head the AU for the next year at the weekend, most Malawia ns - especially Mutharika's ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) zealots - h ave been saying "Malawi stands to benefit" from Mutharika's ascendancy to the pi n nacle of African politics.
However, economists have warned that in fact, Malawi should expect to foot some cost surrounding the chairmanship.
Said Mutharika in remarks broadcast on state radio: "As chairman of the AU, I wi ll be traveling to different countries to meet different heads of state and orga n isations.
We will get some prestige.
" Mutharika was speaking on his return from the AU summit in Ethiopia, where he wa s elected chairman of the largely peace-making continental body, taking over fro m Libyan strongman Mouammar Kadhafi.
"After transacting the business of African Union, I will take an opportunity to address challenges that our different sectors of the economy are experiencing an d that would be our major benefit.
â?However, after the end of our tenure of office, we will evaluate the benefits ," he said at an airport news conference.
Finance Minister Ken Kandodo wants Parliament, currently sitting in the capital, Lilongwe, to approve 500 million Malawi kwacha (about US$ 3 million) to run act i vities that the president would undertake as AU chair.
The funds will also enable the country, which depends on donor funds for its dev elopment programmes, to host AU meetings, including one by African finance and p lanning ministers set for March in the administrative capital Lilongwe, accordin g to the Finance Minister.