JB applauds Mutharika; Hails German, UK for Malawi cashgate probe 

Malawi former president Joyce Banda has applauded her successor Peter Mutharika for continuing with what she started on crackdown into the biggest financial scandal in Malawi’s history called cashgate.

Banda at London School of Economics

Banda at London School of Economics

London School of Economics auditorium fully packed when Banda delivered her lecture

London School of Economics auditorium fully packed when Banda delivered her lecture

Banda, during a lecture at the prestigious London School of Economics and Police Science on Wednesday evening said former EU envoy to Malawi Alexander Baum played a vital role in helping her realise that there was pilfering of public funds with “loopholes” in the public payment system introduced by her predecessor Bingu wa Mutharika.

She said the looting actually took place over a longer period dating back to 2005 when Mutharika, who died suddenly in 2012, was in power.

“Upon learning the nature and gravity of theft of resources in the public service, I immediately instituted a forensic audit by external auditors,” Banda told a fully packed LSE auditorium in a lecture which was streaming live at the top university’s website.

“I had decided to get to the bottom of the problem and stop theft and corruption in government once and for all. Government audit reports indicated that this systemic cancer had started way back in 2001 but had been left to permeate and mature.”

A number of government officials implicated in the fraud are facing criminal charges, and a first official was jailed last month for three years over the scandal.

“I had committed myself to fight corruption without fear knowing very well the repercussions on my political career as elections were just months away.

“I had realized that if we stopped theft and corruption in Government, we would save close to 30 percent of our national budget. I made these decisions knowing very well that those affected will fight back, smear and blackmail me with all sorts of name calling and threats including death threats. But I needed to deal with the matter once and for all,” said Banda.

Malawi former president hailed the British Government for providing to financial support to conduct an external forensic audit conducted by London based Baker Tilly into the cashgate scandal.

She   also the German Government “who have taken my request to finance the second phase of the forensic audit into 2009 to 2012 period.”

Germany, one of the countries that suspended aid to Malawi after the cashgate scandal, has granted Malawi  about K9 billion  ( $25-million)  to conduct an audit under the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) rule in what is being christened as ‘DPP K92bn cashgate’ scandal..

“The German-funded audit is to quantify the amount misappropriated over the period 2009-2013,” Katrin Pfeiffer, head of development co-operation at the German embassy, said in a statement.

An interim investigative audit report of the government payment system known as Integrated Financial Management and information System (Ifmis) that the National Audit Office carried out between November 2011 and first half of 2012, which was kept under wraps, showed that government lost over K90 billion through abuse and irregularities.

Price waterhouse Coopers (PwC) International has been named as the audit firm to carry out the exercise.

During the LSE lecture, Banda also hailed Mutharika for continuing with the cashgate probe.

“I also wish to applaud my successor President Peter Mutharika for deciding to continue with this program to fight theft and corruption in the country,” said Banda.

The drama began in September 2013  when Paul Mphwiyo, the then  budget director and the person former president Banda  had tasked to close the loopholes in the public purse, was shot three times in the head in Lilongwe. Miraculously, he survived the attack and is amongst state witness in his shooting case.

Ralph Kasambara, former minister of Justice, has been accused of orchestrating the assassination attempt of Mphwiyo and if facing charges related to that. He is also facing separate money laundering  charges together with chief suspect Oswald Lutepo. He denies any wrong doing.

The Anti Corruption Bureau (ACB) says roughly K20 billion went missing Banda’s two year rule. They add that probably another K90 billion went missing over the eight years of the presidency of the late Bingu wa Mutharika, equal to roughly $500m at the exchange rate of the time.

In total about 30 per cent of the country’s budget could have been looted over a decade – almost as much as donors have provided Malawi over the same period.

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mai nsato
Guest

JB wayamba kale kunjenjemera zedi pomva za Mphwiyo kuti walowa.

mtumbukangoni
Guest

Why the government still hide some cash gaters names? If JB or anyone who was on the big position in JB government should face jail. Please don’t just give them 3 fucking years jail. These people killed alot of people in hospitals. I would say jail them at least 20 some years or life in prison because they are killers.

moses
Guest

jb ndi dhilu
APM is just copy and paste many of the programes of jb

kanthu
Guest

He better do so(APM)

Naganza
Guest
The best to do is to return the money which was stolen and put into their houses. It is a lot of money and can help this country, instead of begging from whites who have developed their nations and are giving us their tax payers money when we ourselves are stealing. Some of these thieves have so much money which they have built houses and businesses. Look at those thieves, they are young but already very rich. Where in Malawi can a young man who is earning 150 000 kwacha build a mansion like the one for Mphwiyo and Lutepo?.… Read more »
REX MSISKA
Guest
Please malawians from all quarters support and demand reports of findings on both, the JB and Bingo’s(the German reports) regimes. Why? because malawians want to leave a good legacy for the future generation. Malawians must not conform to the African norm of corruption, but be transformed by getting to the root of corruption and bring the culprits to books, be it politicians and the public at large. Worse the politicians. Please don’t be regionalistic or tribalistic about the evil of corruption. If you do you are creating disaster for your future generation. You would be respected to toy toy to… Read more »
Windows wa Colly
Guest

Zachamba bax!

BERTHA KULEKANA
Guest

good

private fraser
Guest

jb z not serious

goody
Guest

a mouth speaks anything as well as ears hear everything.clapping hands may mean applauding or sign of boring to let u sit down quickly

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