First Lady Gertrude Maseko Mutharika is reported to have recommended to Malawi Police top brass to “assist accordingly” a member of her Beautify Malawi (Beam) trust, Nazma Ishmael in obtaining a business contract.
Ishmael, who was also a member of the Mudzi Trust of former president Joyce Banda, through her family’s motor company, HTD Motor City donated a KIA four tonner vehicle to the BEAM Trust.
She has been pressing Malawi Police to award her a contract to supply 40 Land rovers.
A source in the Police procurement office confided to Nyasa Times that they had already approved purchase of vehicles from Toyota Malawi but they are getting pressure from the Beam official to consider Land Rovers.
HTD are new Land Rover franchise dealer.
However, there has been resistance from Inspector General Rexten Kachama as the service does not require the said vehicles on an expensive tender being offered by Ishmael.
Sources say Ishmael has been using Beam Trust as her bargaining power and had pleaded with the First Lady to communicate with the Police brass to give her the business.
The First Lady is reported to have recommended to Police to assist Ishmael but the top cops are coy to go ahead with the deal.
The development is mirroring what is happening in the country that through business contracts for supplying services and goods to government, those in government and their associates outside government are enriching themselves.
The financiers of the President and the ruling party are invariably people doing business with government. They corruptly get a contract from government and then pay back something to the President, the ruling party and other politically well connected people.
HTD Limited is a private local Limited Liability Company incorporated in Malawi in 1993.
The company has been making political donations to the former president late Bingu wa Mutharika regime and went to be key “well-wishers” of the Joyce Banda administration bankrolling the People’s Party and continues their “generosity” in support of the current Peter Mutharika government.
The distributors of Kia motors in Malawi were among the companies under probe by the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), with the help of the Reserve Bank of Malawi (RBM), as Treasury paid out a sum of money estimated at K600 million (about $1.5m.)
According to Allan Ntata, the late Bingu wa Mutharika’s legal adviser, a Mrs Sadik of HTD allegedly defrauded government through the Malawi Police close to K20 billion on bogus purchase of motor vehicles like KIA Sorento and President Mutharika is “closely linked and associated with HTD and the bogus payments could be linked to him.”
Observers say the government procurement system has become extremely corrupt and a source of money laundering for those in government and their associates. And they say the rot starts from State House all the way down to the lowest civil servant, public worker or institution.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :