Kamudoni celebrates as Cashgate convict Savala is jailed: State to recover the money

Malawi special Cashgate prosecutor Kamudoni Nyasulu, welcomed the sentencing of businesswoman Caroline Savala to seven years in jail with hard labour for defrauding Malawi government money worthy MK85 million.

Prosecutor Nyasulu: Deserved sentence

Prosecutor Nyasulu: Deserved sentence – Photo by Mphatso Nkhoma, Nyasa Times

Beauty busted to jail for cashgate affair, Savala gets seven years

Beauty busted to jail for cashgate affair, Savala gets seven years.- Photo by Mphatso Nkhoma, Nyasa Times

Savala gets three years custodial sentence on theft charges and seven years custodial sentence for money laundering. The two sentences will run concurrently, meaning that she will serve seven years.

She was found guilty of theft and money laundering on July 17, 2015.

Reacting to the sentence, prosecutor Nyasulu said Savala’s jailing will send out a strong message to all those involved in Cashgate.

Nyasulu said the state was “satisfied” with the sentence considering the gravity of the case.

He further revealed that the State intends to recover some of the money from Savala’s assets, being kept by another cashgate criminal Leonard Kalonga and accomplice Florence Chatuwa.

In her judgement, Justice Fiona Mwale spoke against trivialising the “cashgate” affair – the worst financial scandal in the country’s history.

Western donor nations and agencies, which provide 40% of Malawi’s budget, froze vital aid worth around $150m in reaction to the scandal.

Justice Mwale said cashgate will continue haunting the country economy in coming years.

She  described Savala as a trickster citing the engineering company which she claims was registered with the purpose of stealing from the government.

This was because the company was registered hastily considering that her initial business was a small enterprise which was selling lipsticks.

Despite the absence of Savala’s legal team led by Raphael Kasambara, Mwale gave the convict three years and seven years jail term for theft and money laundering respectively.

Judge Mwale said that no reason given for Kasambara’s absence during the final court’s verdict describing the conduct as a sign of not interested in defending the convict hence passing of the judgment.

This was also despite the 48 hours given by the court for the defense team to present their mitigating factors.

Mwale also observed that mitigating factors which were given later in court were said to be weak and lacking integrity, saying she did not cooperate with the court as she did not plead guilty, thereby wasting time.

The wanton looting of government resources was exposed by the shooting of the then Ministry of Finance budget director Paul Mphwiyo at the gate of his house in Area 43 in Lilongwe on September 13 2013.

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14 thoughts on “Kamudoni celebrates as Cashgate convict Savala is jailed: State to recover the money”

  1. Racist McTumbukaFace says:

    Rough Kasambara ndiwe munthu woipa! mwanayu kumuthawira mulandu! Mmh!

  2. prof. Odiyayo says:

    Guys, I am Ghanaian. My dady was once hired to work on Malawian government reform during Dr Hasting Kamuzu Banda era. I loved to live in that beautiful country, but one thing I observed that Malawians were and are not critical thinkers. They are more of boot-lickers. They were conditioned by Hastings to clap hands even where it is not due. While Kamudoni, the Kavukula boy – the way he used to call himself, is succeeding, his team is persecuting the no-bodies and political opponents, instead of prosecuting them. This is not to say I condone corruption. I hate it so much, but fairness in the root of eradicating the vice. I want to see how MK 577 billion or 61 billion of Mutharika will be concluded. Muluzi’s case tend to send the signal that privileged group will go scout free. Malawian legal system is not desirable. It is centred on monkeys politics and zinjanthropus legal techniques and tactics. I am proposing that the Malawian govt, should hire us again to accomplish our assignment, to perfect the reform, not the reform the APM government is doing. This will save Malawi, my boyhood country from collapsing. I rest my case.

  3. Gwamba says:

    What Ntombikazi should know is that more billions are unaccounted for in each budget which makes the dent in economy even bigger. This cashgate attitude should really be tackled with stiffer penalties to those caught. The underdevelopment you see around is from the same “what will I get out of it attitude”. Out of every budget 50% or more is spent on allowances while the rest of the budget is misappropriated through swindling and uncompleted projects like in this case of Savala

  4. VYOTO says:

    How i wish Kamdoni Nyasulu not only took over the MK1.7 Billion Bakili Muluzi over 9 years old corruption case from Mwala but also fast tracked it.To me, that is a very straight forward and winnable case.Enough evidence is there that Bakili Muluzi is a thief just like Calorine Savala unless the court proves to the contrary.Bakili Muluzi mismanaged MCP finances while serving it as Secretary General and also stole 6 pounds while working as court clerk. By playing delaying tactics for 9 solid years in a straight forward case and even kukapinyolisa Atupele Muluzi of the agenda for change and UDF MPs to DPP Government, it tells the whole world how crooked,desperate Bakili Muluzi is.If Bakili Muluzi was clean in this case,the case could have been concluded long time ago.Bingu Muthalika just like Joyce Banda after him were all thieves so no wonder they sat on the Bakili Muluzi case because they knew they were doing what Bakili did.The MK61 billion Bingu wealth and the Joyce Banda cash gate and her self exile is enough evidence.

    So Madam Judge Fiona Mwale must be reminded that it is the Namathyangas, the Lutepos,the Kalongas,the Mphwiyos, the Calorine Savalas, the Bingus and the Bakili Muluzis of Malawi who played a big part in chasing away our Donors from providing the much needed 40 % budget support.Period.
    Consequently and sadly, the Finance Minister, Goodah Gondwe is getting unfairly hard at charging taxes on innocent Malawians almost on every thing like bread,salt,soap, kaunjika etc thereby making cost of living getting worse and worse day and day and amongst the highest in World because of these thieves.Harry Mkandawire was right to suggest in Parliament two weeks ago that part of the MK61 billion Bingu wealth be paid back to Government just like part of the Caroline Savala stolen money be recovered.Part of the MK1.7 billion from Bakili must also get recovered.

    I find it is a big insult to Malawians that instead of demonstrating seriousness to fight corruption and bring back the much needed Donor support and reduce the cost of living,in his two years as President of Malawi, professor Peter Muthalika has done very little.Peter has made his case to fight corruption look much more weaker by making Bakili Muluzi a thief as a political bed fellow.Imagine a whole Government Chief Prosecutor, Reyneck Matemba having courage to leave the Bakili Muluzi case at an advanced stage citing personal grounds and the whole professor president is sleeping over it. Assuming the Professor President was clean, Matemba should have been fired by now

  5. i welcome the sentense and i am very much convinced with the penalty. Mr prosecutor continue with this kind of punishments not like what the first woman cashgate convict got.
    However, there are many bish fishes left and it is my prayer that you leave no stone untouched.

  6. GODFEARING PERSON says:

    Is the government going to recover the money from all cash gate convicts like Lutepo and the others? If yes, then may I request government to open a special account so that all the recovered cash gate money can be deposited and accounted for. May I also request that the recovery process should be in public so that it can be a lesson to other people who could be thinking of stealing public money in future. This exercise should have no political interference as this is the only way of building our nation.

    1. Chisale says:

      I second you GODFEARING PERSON, otherwise the money will see another cashgate.

  7. Gonthankutu says:

    Ntombikazi you are crying more than the bereaved. What’s your problem? You mean you can outsmart us here while we well know that RSA is rotten to the core? Talk about Jacob Zuma not Malawi. By the way, I don’t think Caroline will be denied sex. Don’t we have male nyapalas in prison who can connive with female nyapalas so that they can at least decant their sperm load on her? Problem is high HIV prevalence rate in prisons. What about some prison warders? Can’t they assist her with some conjugal jabs?

    1. I beg to slightly differ with Gonthakutu. The corruption comparison here does not hold any water.

      I live in South Africa and for starters, you cannot compare South Africa to Malawi – a single municipality’s half-yearly budget in South Africa (not region / province but municipality) dwarfs Malawi’s budget for 3 years (okay maybe I am exaggerating). With their economy, they can do with a little waste here and there – and the wastage is huge – beyond any proportion. But I doubt if we can – because we do not have decent means of generating our own income. The Zuma debacle is just one in their case and actually a drop in the ocean.

      But what I think Ntombikazi was trying to say iss that we should not cry over spilt milk but concentrate on finding ways to recover from the mess.

      She used the word ‘fatalistic’. What she is trying to say is that it seems we are already shovelling soil into our own self-dug graves saying that ‘cash-gate’ has destroyed the economy for good with no hope of recovery what-so-ever – that is the message that seems to be propagated through out!

      South Africa, for one, prospers because their ‘buy local’ campaign works. Of course it is not everything that is produced locally, but the consumer market for local goods is huge! That is one of the examples she gave about our own ‘Best By Malawian. Here they call it ‘Local is Lekker’ – Lekker is an Afrikaans word for ‘Good’.

      Maybe we should try to put things in a different context first each time we read a comment before we also comment on it.

  8. Ntombikazi says:

    Am a South African working in MW for an international NGO. I welcome the sentence but i find the argument that cashgate will continue to haunt MW for years to come rather too fatalistic. MK30 billion is peanuts to derail development of any rightly run country. Thieves everywhere must be punished because, while no country can eradicate it, it is morally wrong. This is a beautiful country which must be positive in its outlook. To always blame cashgate for lack of development is naive. Am shocked at the lack of meaningful development in MW. To rely on tobacco which brings less than USD500 million per year is not on. The buy MW campaign is a complete sham when 90% of goods come from TSA even chickens, tomatoes, irish potatoes. Last week i was in a plane from TSA with a Minister who proudly told me that he went to RSA to buy beds for his guesthouse. How then can you develop like this.

    1. hhmdidi says:

      In case you dont follow, there is a whooping MK577 billion which is yet to be investigated due to lack of political will as it was perpetuated by the current ruling party during Bingu’s time as president.

    2. Ntombazana says:

      offer some tangible solutions madam

    3. The Analyst says:

      O…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………O
      Well said Mtombi . . .
      . . . and the revelations, you have laid bare before our very eyes and questions put to our ears, are painfully true.
      …………………………………………………………………..
      However,
      . . . the amount of money stolen is significantly larger than the quoted K30bn. Its a very deep cut and hollow hole, I can painfully tell you that.
      . . . For South Africa perhaps, but the money stolen; is too big a one-time shock for an already fragile and vulnerable economy like Malawi; which is also crippled with leadership deficiency.
      . . . because of the plunder, Malawi has lost 40% of budgetary support. And if you care to look at our budgetay figures, this is no small sum.
      . . .As a results of the budgetary-support freeze, govt is being forced to make up for the deficit; by inter alia, borrowing heavily on the domestic market, thus pushing interest rates even higher, hence making it hard for the private sector to borrow for investment. Unemployment, slow growth etc; are palpable results.
      . . alternatively, the govt is compelled to raise taxes, tarrifs and other fees – observe! The sufferer is the ordinary Malawian, whose wage are being underfed hence stuntedly growing.
      . . . Furthermore, govt is losing out a lot parading the thieves in courts – allowances, time e,t,c. And since these cases take long time; Malawi will continue to lose out for the next 10 yrs (minimum).
      ……………………………………………………………………
      In short . . .
      . . . In nominal terms, the money stolen may look too scanty to derail national develoment; but in real terms (consequences); it is significantly big.
      O……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….O

  9. Phiri says:

    Caroline kause mumtendere. Mudanjoya koma 7 years no sex not even access to candles for kabunyubunyu zikavuta ndithu. Ndiye kumakhalira chala basi – sorry

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