Fruits of Malawi Investment Forum: Khato Civils sign multi million dollar deals with govt

Malawi’s agenda of bringing foreign investors into the economy is taking great shape with numerous deals being sealed at and after the just ended Malawi Investment Forum (MIF) in Lilongwe.

Botolo: Khato spokesman

Botolo: Khato spokesman

Of special interest is the coming on board of a big investor who happens to be Malawian despite operating from South Africa for years, Khato Civils Pvt Ltd.

Khato Civils (PTY) LTD is a South African based design and construction company involved in the development of large scale infrastructure targeting both the Private and Public sectors.

Registered in 2010, Khato Civils has established itself as one of the leading black emerging construction companies within the South African market.

During the just ended Malawi Investment Forum (MIF), Khato Civils Pvt Ltd signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Malawi Government on Lake Malawi Water Supply Project, a modern bus terminal and tollgates.

According to Taonga Botolo who is Media and Public Relations Manager at Khato Civils, the company will construct a water supply system from Senga bay to Lilongwe.

“This might look like an ambitious or tough project, but it is practically doable and once completed it will give Lilongwe residents an efficient and reliable water supply through the utility company Lilongwe Water Board which has been facing capacity setbacks in their line of duty,” he said adding that this is the first project of its kind here in Malawi.

The company will also construct a modern bus terminal in Lilongwe along the Likuni Road.

The facility will include a five-star hotel and a shopping mall. This infrastructure will be the first of its kind in the country and will add value to the Capital City both economically and beauty.

Another of their project under MOUs signed with government, Khato Civils will mount tollgates on some busy roads in the country, a project that will boost revenue collection by road authorities in the country.

All the three projects are valued at $1 billion (approximately K780 billion).

Botolo was also quick to point out that Khato Civils has the capacity to execute all the projects owing to their track record in the whole Southern Africa.

“We have the technical capacity and expertise to embark on a project of this caliber and complete it in shortest time possible. For the record, as Khato this is not our first time to do such a project.Currently, we are also involved in almost a similar project in Giyani, Limpopo Province in South Africa. This project is designed as a long term water solution to Mopani District Municipality and it’s worth ZAR 11 billion project.”

He added, “As you can see our capacity to carry out such a phenomenal project in a robust economy that is South Africa means we will deliver desirably on the Lake Malawi Water Supply Project. Our technical and financial capacity does not in any way come under question.”

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15 thoughts on “Fruits of Malawi Investment Forum: Khato Civils sign multi million dollar deals with govt”

  1. Ine says:

    Is Khato coming to invest or to do a contract which afterall needed to be tendered for? And if its a contract as it sounds, how was the bidding process?

  2. Afana Zedi says:

    I don’t get it. Is Khato coming to invest or they have won a tender to do the projects for which Government must pay them? And why have a 5 star hotel at a bus station? On toll roads, which roads are you tolling? The same pot holed single lane paths? Do the traffic flows warrant tolling? Where’s the feasibility study? Or is this just a way of suffocating motorists who already pay numerous levies?

  3. Chimzinga says:

    Dodgy tender processes and ministerial intervention turn water supply project into a pipe dream
    R170 million was paid to three companies in October 2014 to ensure a consistent supply of water to the Limpopo town of Giyani and surrounding villages.
    Despite this, residents go for up to five days at a time without water and are forced to buy from neighbours fortunate enough to have boreholes.
    A City Press investigation has revealed that the three companies – LTE Consulting, and construction companies Khato Civils and South Zambezi – were awarded a R502 million tender in September 2014 to improve the water supply to the entire Mopani District Municipality.
    LTE ceded the contract to Khato Civils on October 10 – and three days later that company was paid R170 million.
    Documents obtained by City Press show this payment as R100 million in “advances”, and the remaining R70 million for “measured work” that had already been completed.
    The payment was for an “emergency project” – the refurbishment and maintenance of the Giyani water and waste-water plants. The project was handed over by deadline at the end of October 2014.
    The ceremony was attended by President Jacob Zuma and Water and Sanitation Minister Nomvula Mokonyane.
    But 18 months later, there is still little water to be had in Giyani’s taps.
    Shortly after being appointed minister in May 2014, Mokonyane revoked the Mopani District Municipality’s powers to act as a water services authority. She then directly appointed Polokwane-based, state-owned water utility Lepelle Northern Water to be the implementing agent for the entire R502 million project.
    Lepelle Northern Water then directly appointed LTE Consulting, based in Midrand, Johannesburg, as consulting engineers. In turn, LTE appointed construction firms Khato Civils and South Zambezi to do the actual work.
    An engineer who is aware of the project, who asked not to be named, said LTE should never have won the contract because the company’s core business was consulting, not construction.
    Another problem, he said, was that before ceding the contract to Khato, LTE was both the consulting engineers and the construction company. “They were both referee and player at the same time. This is unheard of in our sector. It is highly irregular.”
    Thulani Majola, a senior LTE executive, refused to comment, and referred all queries to the department of water and sanitation.


    In the past three weeks, City Press has approached Mokonyane’s department five times to find out if the services of Lepelle Northern Water were procured via an open public tender process.
    No responses were given.
    Siviko Mabunda, secretary of the Forum of Limpopo Entrepreneurs (Fole), insists there was no tender.
    Despite several requests for comment, Lepelle Northern Water did not respond and answer whether LTE, Khato Civils, or South Zambezi were appointed through a public tender process. According to the Public Finance Management Act, goods and services exceeding R500 000 have to be procured through public tender.
    Documents relating to the Giyani project show that on October 13 2014, Lepelle Northern Water’s acting CEO, Phineas Legodi, signed and approved the R170 million payment to Khato Civils.
    Companies and Intellectual Property Commission (CIPC) information reveals that Khato Civils and South Zambezi are related companies and share a director, Simbi Phiri. Phiri is also listed on LTE’s newsletter as an employee of the company.
    In addition to the R170 million paid to Khato Civils, the documents also reveal that in the space of two weeks, between October 13 and 27 2014, Lekgodi also signed and approved further payments of R126 million from the department despite incomplete work.
    Several visits to Giyani in the past three weeks revealed that residents go without water for up to five days at a stretch.
    Before Khato Civils refurbished the Giyani water and waste-water plants in October 2014, the town’s residents had the same complaint, but little appears to have changed.
    In Giyani’s townships, residents were seen pushing wheelbarrows to get water from neighbours with boreholes.
    The water merchant in the Giyani city centre was inundated with residents replenishing their containers.
    The shopkeeper refused to comment, but resident Shimmy Nxumalo said she was used to buying water.
    “What can we do? I spend in excess of R100 on water every week. Thank God I can afford it. There are people in villages who use raw water straight from the rivers. It’s pretty sad.”
    Khato Civils and South Zambezi were required to refurbish and maintain water pumps and boreholes, increase water pressure, install new pump stations, repair leaking valves and increase water supply to the Nkhensani Hospital, according to a scope of work document.
    Speaking on condition of anonymity, an employee who works at the hospital said that in 2014 Khato Civils had built an expensive water purification plant there, but it had worked for only a month.
    “I don’t know what it costs, but it is quite expensive. It was supposed to purify water from the boreholes for our toilets and equipment.
    “If the water is not purified, the equipment [such as sterilisers] breaks.”
    In the last year, the employee said, the water supply had been erratic and inconsistent, but there had always been some sort of supply.
    The situation was worse in other places.
    In Section E, Thomas Chauke said there was no water on Tuesday and Thursday, and it happened almost every week. “If we don’t have, we go to those with boreholes and they sell to us.”
    Selinah Mkhari, who lives in Section F, said she was shocked to hear that so many millions of rands had been paid to improve water supply.
    “Water supply here has never changed. It would be a miracle to have an uninterrupted water supply for seven days on end.”
    Speaking to City Press on Friday, Phiri said he owned Khato Civils and South Zambezi. He also said he had known LTE’s directors for many years and worked for the company “many years ago”.
    “Look, I don’t know how LTE got the contracts. They brought us in to help with the work because we have the expertise. We have worked with them on other projects before and we have a memorandum of understanding.”
    Phiri denied that the R170 million was an upfront payment.
    “When they paid us that money, I had used my own R66 million on their projects. So they were settling that and paying for us to continue doing more work.”
    However, he did not respond as to why he was paid three days after LTE had ceded the contract to him.
    Phiri said as much as Giyani still had water problems, the situation had improved dramatically.
    “When we went there, the sewage plant had not been working for two years. They were spilling their sh*t into rivers. We fixed reservoirs, purification plants, repaired leaks and improved boreholes. We brought experts from overseas to help us with water pressure and many more.”
    Phiri said he was aware that many villages did not have water, and that getting water to those areas would take time because of the rugged terrain.

  4. Free up black people says:

    This Botolo guy has an ugly face. Eish

  5. Davie Maganga says:

    Khato Civils with the team of staff you have and your financial capability I have all the hope that this project will bring change to Malawi as a country

  6. HE the Life President Mfuti Kasinja? says:

    Dat is absolute nonsense. Why importing Civils whilst we have MKAKA and others. Poor Malawi.

  7. Karrim says:

    Good news.
    but, can u shd more light on funding issues and project timeframe.

  8. The truth says:

    Khato Civils is being investigated in SA over how it won bids without public tender. The Limpopo deal they mention wasn’t worth R11bn. Moreover, the residents of that town still have no water. Just google this company for yourself. They are crooks. Just another cashgate-enabler; no wonder why our criminal politicians were keen to sign an MOU.

  9. FreeTechAdvise says:

    DPP as corrupt as ever. From Zuma to Mutharika, Simbi begins to infest Malawi nasty deals

  10. [email protected] says:

    We have been telling successive governments that the only way to end water shortage is to tap it from Lake Malawi. It is less than 12 KMs.

    Please we want to comment on the design of the bus terminus. Please circulate the design. We are tired of contractors ripping off the government because of corruption

  11. Donex Mhango says:

    Well done Malawi government and Khato Civils for this project,we are all happy,this will ease the problem of water in Lilongwe and other surrounding areas

  12. Mzidzi Kayembe says:

    koma apa nde mwatitha ife anthu aku Dowa,takhala tikuvutika pa nkhani ya madzi kwa nthawi yaitali zedi,zikoma inu a Khato Civils pamodzi ndi boma chifukwa cha project imeneyi

  13. Modester Chirwa says:

    This is what we call development,thank you very much Malawi Government and Khato Civlis,Lilongwe residents will now have water throught the year

  14. Modester Chirwa says:

    wow! koma a Relations Manager mwatchena nsanje si umuna

  15. Brave Gonjani says:

    Thats the way to go Khato Civils,I believe this project will bear fruits considering the team you have, the likes of Taonga Botolo

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