Lilongwe - Malawi's finance minister, Goodall Gondwe, has confirmed plans by government to employ more waiters to tend to the needs of President Peter Mutharika, Nyasa Times reports.
Despite a restriction limiting the employment of people in government, Gondwe said that the newly-appointed waiters were set to serve guests during presidential functions.
While refusing to reveal how many waiters were to be appointed to work at Mutharika's official residence, Gondwe claimed that vacancies had become available due to staff allegedly leaving their posts.
The freeze on government employment had done little to limit Mutharika's extravagant taste, however, with Government having employed over 20 aides in recent times to assist with activities related to the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP).
The development came hot on the heels of harsh criticism leveled against the southern African leader in recent times, due to utterances related to the millions of starving citizens in need of assistance in Malawi.
President Mutharika recently told hungry Malawians to eat mice and grasshoppers in a bid to curb the scourge of hunger that had hit the nation.
Hi remarks caused an immediate backlash, with some Malawians claiming that Mutharika was being offensive to some religious groups who did not eat mice.
The country's communication minister Patricia Kaliati, however, hit back at critics, claiming that Mutharika's remarks were "just a joke" and that criticism following his utterances could only be described as "thoughtless".
"The president has a right to joke when he is interacting with his people. He does not have to fear to explore his sense of humour simply because fault-finders lie in wait to denounce anything that he says," Kaliati was quoted as saying.