Bonongwe branded ‘selfish’ for backing Malawi Saving Bank sale

Malawi Savings Bank (MSB) employees have attacked the state-owned bank Chief Executive Officer, Ian Bonongwe as selfish and incompetent for campaigning to sell the institution.

Bonongwe (L)  is supporting the sale of MSB

Bonongwe (L) is supporting the sale of MSB

In an anonymous letter addressed to Bonongwe and copied to members of staff, Reserve Bank of Malawi Governor, Secretary to the Treasury, MSB Board Chair, Chairperson of the Finance and Budget Committee of Parliament and Chairman of PPPC, the employees say they have observed with apprehension that the insistence by Bonongwe to sell the bank is not in the interest of employees.

They argue that the sell is intended to benefit “your insatiable greed Mr. Charles Ian Bonongwe Sir and the rest of your cronies namely Charles Chuka and Thomson Mpinganjira.”

The staff accuses Bonongwe of holding serious meetings with his associates and further say he is personally advancing his interests.

Staff have also complained that ever since Bonongwe took over the CEO seat the Bank has continuously underperformed such that the Bank could no longer declare dividends to the shareholder.

According to the Reserve Bank of Malawi, the MSB is weighed down by bad loans and it requires a $48.3 million (MWK 23.7 billion) in capital and liquidity by June to satisfy Basel II financial and regulatory requirements or risk being struck off by the central bank.

The Public Private Partnerships Commission (PPPC) requested strategic investors to buy a controlling stake in MSB in which the government owns 100 percent of its shares.

But the government’s divestiture agency did not disclose the sizes of the stakes that are up for sale or how much it was selling them for.

Bonongwe supports the sale of the bank, saying it would allow the bank to attract new capital and grow for the benefit of the Malawian economy.

“The growth of MSB has been constrained by the lack of capital which has slowed down our pace of modernizing and automating our systems,” said Bonongwe as quoted in the Daily Times.

According to Bonongwe, MSB’s profitability has proceeded at a slower pace over the years making it unable “to grow in a manner it should”.

Bonongwe stressed “there are more advantages than disadvantages” in selling the MSB.

Lawmakers blocked the sale in parliament recently referred the matter to the Budget and Finance Committee of Parliament for further scrutiny.

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51 thoughts on “Bonongwe branded ‘selfish’ for backing Malawi Saving Bank sale”

  1. PLEASE LISTEN says:

    Our Leaders made mistakes in the past to sell most of the Malawi Development Corporation to foreigners. Companies like Chipiku stores, Davidwhitehead and sons etc. Instead of turning those companies to be fully owned by Malawians.Our privatisation did not look at advantages and disadvantages of that programme. There were managers in those companies that tried had to ask government to develop a policy to help malawians own those companies. The result was obvious. Foreignes took the companies some of whom are always caught at airports with dollars which the country yawn for. It is foolish to sell that bank look for a better way to run it.Malawians must own it fully and people should stop abusing our banks.

  2. Nyekhulani Molimbika says:

    its a shame coz most who are commenting are commenting with little inhouse knowledge of MSB. Bonongwe is a failure and he is trying to earn himself a masive retirement package. MSB was been perfoming better under the stewardship of Mwanamvekha and Sadala. please read the staff concerns for your info!

  3. Maggie Lucius says:

    Sad article. You are hating on the wrong man. Bonongwe is top class economist not you idiots who authored the letter

  4. est says:


  5. sabiti says:

    Banking is most profitable bussiness in Mw why is MSB failing, bad debts, by who? Politicians and their cronies , free the bank from political bondage it will tick no doubt

  6. yuona says:

    Ikanakhala kuti ngongoleyo anatenga ndi a MCP bwenzi mutachita kutulutsa press release. Koma poti ndi inu nomwe mwangoganiza zochigulitsa chinthuchi.

  7. tuvi says:

    alomwe! alomwe! nophwisa! zitsiru za wanthu ndiye ndi alomwe, kuba number one, uhule number one, ufiti number one. am sorry that even a person despite being mlomwe Mpinganjira has joined the band wagon. ayi a kwao ndi mizu ya kachere imakumana pansi

  8. musisipala says:

    Msb ndi ya a Malawi, musayigulise. Tell Muli ndi ena abweze ngongole.

  9. Abambo says:

    Why are people blaming Bonongwe as if he is the sole proprietor of MSB? Why are most Malawians idiots?

  10. Truth says:

    If you are talking sense why hide your name. the whole bank is useless and has a hangover of ndizaboma mentality and most senior management dedicate time to personal business instead of working. the most sensible thing is to sell this loss making enterprise

  11. Client says:

    Foolish people work at this bank, if someone wants to open an account or get a loan you give them a a hussle and never provide the loan or it will take months to open the account. And how did you expect to prosper? You did not work and you run your bank down, why cry now? The other bank silly tellers should learn from you, fooling around instead of giving people their deposists. Fotseki, mumaona ngati ndalamayo amakodza ndi agogo anu?

  12. Kadakwiza says:

    A Lomwe agwetsa bank yimeneyi kuti ayigule iwowo.Very sad indeed Be careful Malawians. Malawi is going no where with these lomwes.

  13. wanangwa says:

    Mpopo mpopo, Bonongwe rose to be GM Economic Services in the 1980s because of tribalism. He was favoured by F.Z. Pelekamoyo not performance.

  14. Alufeyo says:

    Foolish employees. The Malawi govt should not bail out this village and bank staffed by idiots. Dont bring your internal politics to the public you are all daft. Sell the bank pse. Agalu inu very selfish you want to squeeze MSB dry of its blood. To all stupid MSB employees pse find new jobs.

  15. mona says:

    Name the loan defaulters, you will find out they are dpp officials let them pay back the loans they got. Otherwise kugulitsa msb 500 million is even less than the cost of building of msb head office in blantyre. The head office building is worthy over 4 billion but dpp want to buy the whole bank @ 500 million the whole bank country wide, what a shame no wonder 50 yrs of independence we are still the poorest country on earth, dpp mwatikwana you are very foolish

  16. Tondetonde says:

    Dont sell Msb and you Bonongwe hands off with ur Chuka leave the bank to serve Malawians. That bank can register good profits. Nayenso ST abgovomera zili zonse akuganiza ndi mkalasi eti. Why is it other banks are posting profits? Komanso inu amene munatenga loans pay back sizomapita ku khoti ngati kuti nthawi imene mumatenga munapita ku khoti. Si for you Bonongwe leave as soon as possible komanso nzako Chuka naye achoke mukuksmbirana zopusa. So many gvt companies have been sold what is it that we have gained? So dont tell us of many advantages than disadvantages if we were to sell the bank. The employees at Msb please do Malawi a service move Bonongwe out of his office when ge vomes, if the bsnk is sold most of you will br un employed who will be feeding your families? For you Mpnganjiri keep your node at FDH you want to kill the Peopled bank to benefit your bank. Bravo parliament for blocking the sale. Komano uyu ati finance minister nayenso bwanji kodi akufuna kugula nawonso? Dont mislead our dear leader. NO TO SALE OF MSB BONONGWE ACHOKE NSANGA!

    1. saidi says:

      Don’t sell the Bank. Mugulitsa bwanji bank angongole asanabweze. Landani katundu wamunthu wina aliyense alindingongole ndi bank yi ndipo mugulitse bank ibwelele mwakale basi. Bonongwe achoke wakanika ntchito basi.

  17. yona says:

    Very funny. How come 4billion additional capital is turning to 23billion. .? Wina anadyapo hence kukakamila . Pitani ku capital hill komwe anakutumizani

  18. ELHAPO says:

    I wish someone could tell me how the employees expect to have security of tenure in an institution whose very survival is hanging in the balance!

    To my mind, if MSB is not sold then ALL the employees risk losing their jobs. If however, the Bank is recapitalized through the “sale”, some employees might lose their jobs particularly the dead wood; but the majority will remain in gainful employment!!

    I would support that this transaction be allowed to go ahead.

    I am amazed at the MPs who suggest that the Government should inject fresh capital into this Bank. I thought, these MPS have been told repeatedly that the Government is broke. Which part of this statement don’t they understand? You mean the Government should support an ailing Bank [and this is against the backdrop of a country with – how many? ten/twelve banks??] at the expense of social services? And yes, in a year in which Malawi has suffered one of the worst floods in living memory.

    What sort of people are we? Increasingly, I am unsurprised that we are amongst the poorest in the world!

    1. Era says:

      Watumidwa ndi Bonongwe and Mulli to write this shit

  19. joseph banda says:


  20. Ziliko says:

    Bonongwe’s under performance is well documented even during his years @ RBM. He was chased from RBM by being redeployed to MSB where he initially worked for 10 years (1997 – 2007) as CEO. Records show that during that decade the bank did very poorly and did not record a single profit but shamelessly continued to sustain losses thereby forcing Government to redeploy him to ADB to save his face. During his time at MSB no accounts were ever produced. His preoccupation at that point was to sell the bank having failed to make profit. Ironically the fortunes of the Bank immediately made a turnaround upon appointment of new management under Joseph Mwanamvekha. Company’s profitability continued to increase over the years until 2012 when Mr Bonongwe was reappointed by Amayi as CEO. Since then the Bank’s performance continues to dwindle. Upon his second coming he resurrected his agenda of selling the bank. He’s got nothing to offer. I think he cannot positively turn the fortunes of the bank even if he was given additional capital. Very incompetent old man deserving retirement so that he can dedicate his efforts to his role of an Impi in the village.

  21. Kaybeez says:

    Mwians at work!Fools!! I wish I was not 1 of U but alas!Gosh!!We are failures,a country ruled by pple ‘n’ not LAWS!!!selfish!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  22. Jimmy juga says:

    My fellow malawians i wish we could debate the issue with sober mind and come up with merits and demerits. If out weigh the other lets support the idea. The bank needs a capital needs injection of 23 bilion,are the employees ready with their so called anonymous letter ready to contribute for its survival.gvt should tell us why the bank is not perfoming?is it todo with encompetency if so why not change management.

  23. Justice Dzonzi says:

    The problem with MSB is also very incompetent management team. People like bonongwe , Phiri the IT idiot and Salaka the finance fool are not competent by any measure to be part of the management team at MSB. No wonder the bank is performing miserably when other banks are swimming in easy money from cheap tobacco forex and more than generous government treasury bills and bonds. There is no innovation on malawi banking industry than making correct capital allocation decisions which requires first year economics textbook knowledge easily found in lipsey or Paul Samuelson textbooks!

  24. WAWA says:


  25. ujeni says:

    Zinchito za Alhomwe, stealing if not then killing

  26. The way banks are stealing from us, how can someone think of the most profitable(thieving) business in malawi.

  27. Chikopa says:

    Akulu akulu a msb ndinu ogona kwambiri ndinakuzani kalekale kuti tatengani team ya Big bullets muzichita sponsor muone zimene zingachitike koma muli ndi marketing mananger, tangoyesani kuti bullets tipasa sponsorship ya k150million muone zomwe zingachitike kodi amalawi kugonaku bwanji mukulola ma bank ngati nation azipanga profit ya k11billion ndalamazawo amadya anthu olemera okhaokha , amadya ndi a golf zosalazo amakasiya kwa sing’anga ndiye inu mungoyang’ana maso waaa ngati nkhuku yoti yameza mkanda ndibwelesa kalata ndizatenge udindo wa market manager enanu mungotha mazira basi

  28. Achimidzimidzi says:

    Can this Bonongwe be redeployed, please.

    He must be very dull. If anybody buys MBS is it going to be operating within Malawi or not. What will the buyer do to improve it.

    Let your Bonongwe do the right thing as long it remains in Malawi.

  29. Nkhombokombo says:

    Ian Bonongwe if anything you have failed the MSB as you are putting up the current stance. This is/was under your nose and rightly you must be in the know how where the Bank is taking it wrong. Selling the Institution is not the only last solution, you should have come up with your proposals for the way forward and not selling it. This is now embarrassing the wrong people whose names are being mentioned here, some of them, very promising progressive young business men. Its a folly to see the country wide Bank cramble down in manner you want it to go. Most of us Malawians knew banking because of this Bank in the rural areas. If you have an interest to own a Bank start your own and don’t interfer with this old Bank. The change of the name to MSB has just come, we used to call it as POSB. Let us not retrogress but progress. These are some of the programmes which put us the poorest among the poor. Remember MDC, Chipiku, Agrimal and many more, what has the common man in the street and rural areas benefitted from their sells? Almost zero. Watch out!

  30. de' Morgan says:

    Bonongwe, watch your back!!!!!!!!!!!!!! loaded gogodela are just around your vicinity.

  31. Mwiza says:

    Let it sold and be like National Bank of Malawi, the number 1 Bank. MBS in it’s current form is just being abused. Opportunity Bank of Malawi and NBS are already in the so called rural areas. Let’s not hold on to things that do not really change the lives of Malawi

  32. Moving copse says:

    Zithyupiti zanu. Sakudziwa ndani kuti mukubisa chilungamo. Mwapeza kale ogula. Ma doonors asatikhulukuire ndife anthu oononga kwambiri. Makutu a manu

  33. Guley says:

    They want to sell the bank and have Jumbe be the CEO. How can you entrust someone who destroyed ADMARC to run the bank. Mukuyifunila zabwino koma.

  34. Mtupatupa says:

    They want to let Mulli Brothers Ltd go away with the money he was collecting in the name of Bingu wa Mutharika, now given to him as overdraft Loan. This is one reason why Malawi will is not developing, shame to us, people of the POOREST COUNTRY IN THE WORLD!

  35. William Banda says:

    Thom Mpinganjira is a close friend of Ben Phiri then DPP. If indeed the bank is worth K500m why not sale to other deserving Malawians. Mnage your FDH bwana, leave MSB to other people, do not be greedy sir.

    Should people buy things because they are connected to DPP? Does one win government tenders simply by being connected to DPP? this is why another 50 years of doing nothing is around the corner.

    THOM MPINGANJIRA ENOUGH IS ENOUGH, We will expose you yako ija.

  36. pompo pompo says:

    Anonymous letters this time…..umbulu wam’maofesi? Impeachment this time……….Auladi….wait for 2019 sukalowa mkuparliament komweko ?
    Do you first dig someone’s profile……….? I do not agree with those who say he is incompetent for the following reasons:
    1. During Kamuzu Days when all was based on merit he rose through the ranks from low ranks with a first degree from CHANCO in Economics up to General Manager Economics not administration when the current Governor was his deputy.
    2. He left the Bank when the Kwacha was 8 or 15 to the Mighty Us Dollar after those other ones wrecked power from HK.
    3. he was seconded to Department of Economic Planning to establish that Department
    4. He was seconded to MSB when the bank was operating in Post Offices
    5. He was seconded to ADB Tunisia to oversee 8 countries where we also observed that grants to Malawi trebled
    6. He came back to Malawi to assist his country in all capacities you are familiar with.
    Listen to what GG said in parliament that this is a reform process which cannot be reversed now its too late. For the anonymous letter writers please start preparing on what to do next for the hummer is now on your head. do not victimize other innocent persons I tell you are planning to fail GOD IS IN CONTROL. How many times have such bills been refred to business committee? Do you think when Mzungu say no to government running business ……..your law makers who promise to buy coffins for the dead as a campaign will reverse this…..

    IT IS WRITTEN ON THE WALL THAT GOVERNMENT HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH BUSINESS ….Its a pity now that even the Law Makers can not understand this and these are Malawi Law Makers ……… Those with no some basic education should be in this House for the last time.

  37. George Lihoma. says:

    I think the whole population should have learnt a good and bad example alltogether from cashgate.Those in insistence akufuna akhale ma large shareholders kapena aigule iwowo which will be limited benefitters whilst majority tikuvutikabe. The other thing is; akaigulitsa,wogulayo after very few months azanena kuti ma MSB ammidzi saakuwinamo so adzawatseka.IMAGINE.Aphunzitsi ambiri kuno kuMachinga travel as far as Muwawa to Ntaja (+-68kms)only to access their salaries.Nde itatsekedwa Ntaja MSB,next ku Town idzakhala Liwonde or Zomba.MUKAKWERA PAMSANA PANJOVU MUSAMATI KULIBE MAME.Hahahahahahahaha!

  38. gondwe says:

    Cowards always write anonymous letters!!!!!!!!! Real fighters reveal their identities. Go and read ” LONG WALK TO FREEDOM”

  39. John Suzi Makhawa says:

    Please school me, when did employees start having interest in the affairs of shareholders? Employees have no say in as far as shareholding is concerned unless they have a stake be it minority or what. They are simply labourers. Does a domestic worker have a say in the divorce of his/her bosses? Osamangolowelera zili zonse ayi. The Reserve Bank can close the bank due to its low capital base. If the employees have a say why don’t they raise the capital? They want us taxpayers to raise capital for them? NOOO.

  40. Achi says:

    The truth is that the DPP government has borrowed billions of kwachas from msb to finance the zero aid budget. Thus the DPP govt is currentky deep in debt loaned from msb. MSB cannot perform when all its monies are robbed of it by the very government that is suppossed to protect and support it.

    The DPP’s plan is therefore intends to sell msb to scrap off the debt from their shoulder, and have fkrced Bonongwe to dance to the DPP tune. Sell of msb is a DPP desperate agenda and has no welfare of Malawians.

    I urgue all Malawians, churches, CSOs, MPs to stand strong against this evil scheme.

    By the way, why is Kapito silent????????? Betrayer??????

  41. Era says:

    A Thom Mpinganjira, sort out mess yaku MRA as Board Chair. You are so incompetent as board chair that is why Kamoto is just firing people at will coz he knows of your incompetence.

  42. XXY says:

    DPP wishes to sell the bank to Thom Mpinganjira at a song of MK500m in return for funding its compaign in the last general transactions. All documents have already been signed.

    1. John Suzi Makhawa says:

      XXY, whoever you are, Thom Mpinganjira is not your size. It can take whole of your life, all your relatives, all your generated until the end of time, you cant reach even a minute fraction of who he is. Ngati akutumuni a Shadrick Namalomba ndi a Masangwi zanu izo. These people are savages. They think they own the presidency.

  43. Achimwene says:

    If politicians gets a loan from the bank and fails to pay back because they are connected
    Which is better maintaining this status quo of allowing greedy people eat customers investments or allowing independent hands run it profitably

  44. Ngongoliwa says:

    I think this man has been promised the moon. Kulimbikira kumeneku doesn’t look normal. Akuuza kuti akupatsa zingati? By the way when are you reporting at Capital Hill?

  45. mbwaxe says:

    Lomwes at play!!!!ready to pounce on delicay and later on share the carcas!!!!! Pano mwauponda!!!! Calling nation wide demoz

  46. Dausi masangwi says:

    Let Bonongwe sale his own Bank not that of Malawians if he has failed let him step down bwino bwino

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