Malawi needs redemption: HTD Ltd and the untouchable cashgate Asians

Before I present my reflections and analysis in this entry of Loose Cannon , let me commend my readers for the fabulous response that I have received in terms of feedback. Some were encouraging comments about my perceptive jottings while other -usual suspects – were annoyed with me being a critic of those holding public office. Never mind of threats poured to me, I am not a coward so I don’t dwell much on that.Loose cannon

Now, to the current subject.

Malawi needs redemption but it is not forthcoming. The only cancer that is eating at its very core is bribery and corruption.

The country has in place good governance institutions such as Anti Corruption Bureau (ACB) and Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) yet nothing is working. In fact some individuals in the very same institutions are the ones that are prone to corruption. Wasn’t someone arrested the other day at FIU because of bribery and selling of information for money?

It forced the body to issue a statement to the media to try to clear the embarrassment, yet it communicated nothing apart from proving guilt.

The tragedy is that even when media highlight these issues no one takes notice and this malaise is prevalent even in the highest echelons of government.

Nyasa Times exposed the intricate syndicate web of the murky world that is HTD Limited externalising money and winning tenders and being paid top dollar through suspicious means yet nobody seems to care.

Financial Intelligence Units of South Africa and Hong Kong are being engaged to check the colossus that is HTD, yet the presidency is quiet.

Auditors recommended that Malawi Revenue Authority should consider assessing tax obligations for HTD and that Reserve Bank should investigate the illegal transfer of forex yet nobody is taking action.

Anti Corruption Bureau was also advised to prove the payments from Ministry of Defence that were in order and that goods were supplied and that Fiscal Fraud Unit should investigate the invoices that are used to clear vehicles if they are different from the ones sent to Banks for forex application but both bodies are waiting to sit down properly before taking action.

The Baker Tilly’s cashgate report estimated K20 billion ($38.2 million) looting in government for goods not delivered and services not rendered for a six-month period between April and September 2013 and some guilty companies are owned by Malawians of Asian origins yet, none of them has been interrogated or mentioned as witness in a court of law.

The ‘K577 billion’ reconstruction of cashbook carried out by PricewaterhouseCoopers also reveals a number of companies of Malawians of Asian origins being at the heart of Cashgate and yet nobody has been asked to stand before a court of law.

Is it because some of the Asians involved, such as managers from HTD, have British passports and Malawi does not want to upset the British this time around by arresting their citizens?

Even in Britain, HTD Limited boss Abdul Majid Aboobaker has a track record. A research on him shows his companies, Caber Trading in 1995 and Falcon Crescent Corporation Limited were involved in bootleg deals.

But Malawi belongs to all Malawians. President Peter Mutharika must do the right thing and act on ‘cashgate’ Asians in general and HTD in particular. His inaction is complicity and one wonders whether it is because his party, the DPP, is largely funded by Asians.

As for HTD, remember that he personally opened their so called Motor City office complex at Ginnery Corner in Blantyre. First Lady Gertrude Mutharika’s charity is also beneficiary of HTD largess. HTD member is an official of First Lady’s charity BEAM. Is this what is tying APM’s hands?

Time to put a stop to this  “double standards” of not pursuing Malawians of Asian origin doing business in the country involved in financial scams in government.

Loose Cannon newslog is waiting and Malawians are waiting.

Corruption is worse that prostitution. The latter might endanger the moral of an individual, tje former invariably endangers the morals of the entire country.”Karl Kraus

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42 thoughts on “Malawi needs redemption: HTD Ltd and the untouchable cashgate Asians”

  1. Soulsista says:

    Mw for life….sukuvesesa zinthu. If you are a constructive analyst then you will be able to draw out critical themes from these comments. Mind you …..Most of these comments are based on facts not second opinions. ….Those commenting know what they are talking about…plus the author has a point..Sizugwirizana with being educated…tiziopa kunena zomwe tikuona??
    Za Racism osayamba cx az far as I kno we are a peaciful nation….foreignerz know this very well…infact its these foreignerz omwe amatisala….
    Tisapite kutali: Zenophobia….Wasnt tht out of racism?? Plus maforeigners analiko ambiri but omwe anakhudzidwa kwambiri anali ndani?? Malawians….ndipo ma report timati SouthAfricans are attacking foreigners….nde pano mtundu ukutchulidwawo zikusonyeza kuti ndiokhudziwa ndi zosololazi….ndipo ambiri mwa iwo alibe danga lotukula dziko lino koma kulidyera masuku pamutu…..
    Assignment: Ufufuze shop ya cement kubwalo la njobvu….thea z a guy from Pakistan who is employed under security service ati kuopesa a Malawi kuba. English saziwa…ku xul sanapite…..koma ati ndimlonda and he z on a pay roll….meaning mmalawi palibepo chake……
    Ask around….do ur research. Kuchitika zinthu….

  2. malawi for life says:

    Its so sad to read all the comments here. All you that talk about indian pakis ..asians etc.. what are you thinking?? Are all the foreigners same?? Look at your hand ..look at the fingers are they all the same??? Hmmm..are they??? Well lets not be racist. I have alot of malawian freinds and are more close then my fellow indians, pakis in short foreigners.!
    Ask yourself ..according to what some of you say on here. Lets say there are afew malawians ..criminals that im talking about, now would you say all malawians are criminals, just for some u cannot say all malawians are the same..! Only those uneducated will say that. All i am saying when you comment u must think twice before typing. As for some of you to inform you there are some foreigners who have been in malawi for decades, coming from me and looking in my family back ground we are the fourth generation here. Think about it my fellow brothers and sisters of malawi. Some of these indians pakis are a problem i do agree but for that you cant say all the indian or pakis are like that. If you have the brains to understand, im sure you agree with what i mean.

  3. Yosefe Gambatula says:

    Malawi is a rich country.If Malawi was not rich,you wouldn’t see all these Asians rushing to Malawi and some are claiming to be losing their passports on weekly basis if you happen to check on the newspapers on lost properties.It has become a common trend with Indians and Pakis..These crooks are conniving with our immigration people to get some dodgy work permits.They have capitalised on the crooked system of politicians who are only interested in self enrichment than developing the ever dwindling Malawi.Its time all Malawians woke up and demonstrated in the street to remove the crap leadership that is not taking Malawi anywhere.We can’t have foreigners who are just messing up our country.Its our country and we need to do something for it.Mutharika and his few crooked cronies are just in interested in making riches in old age which he failed in his youthful age after wasting time in diaspora labouring in some sleepy St Louis,America.We need to change Malawi for the benefit of everybody.We had had enough of this trash for so long.

  4. thako la mmwenye says:

    kodi iwe matemba, Alexander Makina,mpongozi wa a lipenga ku mangochi kuno amangidwa liti? Anaba nawo za cashgate ameneyi ndipo akuti anamuthawitsila ku embassy ku zambia chifukwa akudziwa zinsinsi zambiri za a mayi

  5. RIPPERS says:

    WHY ARE WE CALLING THESE BRITISH CITIZEN – AND HOLDERS OF BRITISH PASSPORT – MALAWIANS OF ASIAN ORIGINS – THEY SHOULD BE SIMPLY CALLED EXPATRIATES

    AS THESE BRITISH PASSPORT HOLDERS ARE NOT TRUE MALAWIANS IF THEY ARE TRUE
    MALAWIANS THEY SHOULD HAVE DENOUNCED THERE BRITISH CITIZENSHIP AND
    STAY WITHIN MALAWI AND PAY PROPER TAXES AND MAKE MALAWI BETTER

    BUT INSTEAD OF DOING THAT THESE BRITISH CITIZENS ARE WHO ARE WITH BRITISH CITIZENSHIP STAYING IN MALAWI WITH PERMANENT RESIDENCE PERMIT THEY ARE HERE TO GET BUSINESS OUT OF GOVT AND DOING BUSINESS IN MALAWI AND GET FOREX OUT OF COUNTRY BY ANY MEANS AND INCREASE IN CORRUPTION

    THEY SHOULD BE PRESSURED TO DENOUNCE THEIR CITIZENSHIP AND GET MALAWIAN
    PASSPORT OR GOVT. SHOULD IMPOSE STRICT RULES AND REGULATIONS ON DOING
    BUSINESS IN MALAWI IF ANY BUSINESS PERSON IS NOT MALAWIAN

  6. chilipaine says:

    WE NEED “OPERATION TIBWEZERENI”…THE SOLDIERS WENT AMOK IN 1993 TO FORCE MYP TO HAND OVER ARMS, WE SHOULD MOBILISE FOR ALL THE STOLEN MONEY TO BE RETURNED….BY ANY MEANS NECESSARY…

  7. Truck says:

    MALAWI WE ARE FAILING TO DEVELOP BECAUSE OF CASHAGTE LOOK AT MOZAMBIQUE AND ZAMBIA THEY ARE MUCH FURTHER DEVELOPED MORE THAN OUR COUNTRY MALAWI AND YOU MUST WATCH OUT THE WHOLE WORLD IS WATCHING ON US.INSTEAD OF PUTTING TOUGH LAWS ON CASHAGATE TO GIVE THEM BAIL THATS WHY NOW CASHAGATERS ARE PLANNING TO KILL LAWYERS HOW CAN YOU GIVE A DANGEROUS CRIMINAL BAIL ITS A JOKE

  8. Soulsista says:

    For the Indian please read the article careful…….It is refering to all Malawians including those of Asian origins plus Asians non-citizens. Asia is a Continent and has 48 nations. Asia is not only India….Get it straight
    Plus there are alot of playerz involved in Cashgate apart from topdogs on the A- List. So Thom’s focal point is to look at this scenario beyond Govt. officals……which to me is the way to go…I mean how come we have more Asians flocking to Malawi which is perceived a poor non- opportunistic country?? and why Asians be involved in Real Estates?? It is because they own this country…..and they know it is Goldmine to them……They are here to grow themselves fat while a native Malawian growz weary and thin by the day……They dont care at all….F they care why pay Malawian peanuts and Fellow Asian times more for the same Job? Why have their own private clinics…schools?? and now universities?? Simple: to hv their own system of retaining income…none should go to a Malawian…..via tertiary Education Govt. collectes tax …now look I havent come across any Malawian of Asian origin in public university they enroll for colleges and universities outside Malawi…meaning More millions going out of Mw……Dnt forget ‘Ndlama wathu…Dziko wanu!’
    God Help Us!!!

  9. Dwambazi says:

    Dzuka Malawi DUka. Lets mobilize!!!

  10. Khamani!! says:

    Nothing will happen unless people take to the streets . If you don’t threaten them in their homes where they “eat” your money then you might as well forget it.

  11. Mzee says:

    Why bother Asians when Malawians are causing more harm to their own country. The level of corruption by top management of CMST is mind boggling. I will reveal how govt is being fleeced by The three top bosses at CMST. The manner in which evaluations are done will reveal the scam. The kick backs received for delivering wrong or unwanted items such spirit. APM cannot develop Malawi unless offices like CMST are swept clean of the crooks currently heading it. One of them is busy funding his political party at the expense of sick Malawians. Jean Kalirani was a useless potato who wanted to be politically corrupt instead of getting to the bottom of drug scarcity. Read my story next week.

  12. Tell the truth to be free says:

    Every Malawian politician except from MCP is corrupt and open to bribes from the Indians every one I repeat. The Indians have denied Malawians from development of their country. These leeches are sucking the blood of Malawians. Not one of them is innocent. Every single Indian should be deported. Just like Adi Amin deported their brothers and sisters from Uganda. If we cannot rid them then the Mutharikas and others will continue to be bribed and sell our country to these blood sucking leeches.

  13. Denguzman says:

    Go deeper Thom amayenda mumbali ma Asians amenewa.

  14. kadamanja says:

    Iwe Thom walemba vikulu apa kweni chi President nga chikupulika galu ya kanthu, vyamwenye vyatikwana kwali tiyambe kuwabela kwali, i will mobilise anyamata aku Mchinji tiyambila Kasungu

  15. Malawiboy says:

    It’s not just Asians, Indian or Chinese, who are stealing from Malawi, It’s Malawians who are aiding and abetting them. Your government, your businessmen, in short, the very people you look to for guidance, who are conspiring to rip you off.
    Wake up Malawi, before it is too late.

  16. indian says:

    I am an indian, born and breed here. Malawi is home for me. Firstly not all indians or asians are the same..we are all different. This cashgate has targetted us in our businesses. I do agree ACB should take strict action against such people for afew handfull rich foreigners why should the whole asian or indian community be blamed? I ask that because what i read here is indian..indians. all i say be specific on your say. Bless

  17. real peasant says:

    If it is the case of cash gates , then its not only the Asians. For example Lutepo did not go into the bank demanding K4billion from the government at all. Someone if not a good number of civil servants were involved in stealing in the cash gates. Why leaving them out? Those charged with governance in civil service must be arrested.

    I mean these accountants who prepared the vouchers, checks and signatories must be packed and be imprisoned. Then we are fighting corruption in Malawi.

    Please I want all the midle men who processed the payments to join Lutepo and Karonga etc. Although Kalonga was a civil servant he did not process the payments at at all. He was just a recipient. Where are the guys who assisted those who cashed the checks. Fish them out.

  18. Xeenoph says:

    Anthu ofukula chilungamo need our total support. If Malawi is to be free from corruption, then we should support each other to fight to the end. These Indians are always left free. Ine sindinaone mu ndende zathu muli these crooked Indians yet there are many Indian crooks.

  19. tenana says:

    Peter Mutharika Got billions of Kwacha through HTD during his brother Bingu, and once he pressures it, you will see the information coming out. I was there close, I know the issue, the PP government was continuing from where the Mutharikas stopped because they also knew about it. Just wait and see. Only if neither PP no DPP was in power then the truth could be drawn.

  20. Ngongoliwa says:

    As far as Malawi is ruled by corrupt team, no Asian will be prosecuted. The Asians are so crafty that they know which button to torch. Search me!!!!!!!!!!

  21. mas says:

    Mufufuzeso,Ku central medical stores, kwangokhala a mwenye okhaokha, pa suppliers list yawo palibe company ya a indigenous Malawi

  22. kingsley bwanali says:

    you’re right Malawians r waitin’ to see the truth. Vuto ndiloti people who did cashgate most of them r ministers nw so i think zikhala zovuta kuti tidziwe chilungamo. For me i give u courage to write this column.

  23. Malawiyano says:

    The fake breaking of Musonkho House in order to hide and destroy the Asians cashgate how far is it ? We all know that Dausi is the one behind this sinstar bullshit in order to save these crooked Asians. Time will come when these masters of cash gate will be taken to task , they are many of them the government is shielding.

    Real Malawians will act accordinglly and if our MPs will not act Malawians will react in a big way.

  24. benjnes says:

    MP for nguludi hanif o g issa is the chairman for this so called asian community parliament should squeeze him as one of the beneficiary is himself. he through his bureau victoria smuggles alot of dirty money both for politicians and the well wished business community the untouchable asian community.

  25. zangaphee says:

    the truth will prevail

  26. Chatsalira says:

    Parliament should raise a motion about the HTD and untouchable Asians. What is so special about Asians. They should prove their innocence in a Court of Law.

    Glad that their are Malawians who love their Country and want this stupid no sense to end.
    Bravo Thom!!!

    #Patiently waiting

  27. Truth shall free you says:

    Your Excellency British High Commissioner its no use UK government insisting on good governance without the Asian business community in Malawi who hold UK passports held accountable for the wide spread corruption in Malawi.
    For in Malawi Corruption starts and finishes with Asian business community in Malawi.
    The Asians business community is responsible for CORRUPTION in Malawi.
    Only Kamuzu could see through the Asians and punished the wrong doers. Abdul Majid was deported for economic crimes by Kamuzu but bribed his way back to Malawi after 1994.

  28. makito says:

    Bravo Loose Canon. Thom thank you. It pains every bonafide citizen, including Malawians of Asian origin that are not involved in clandestine business.

  29. chizamsoka munthali says:

    Mobilise us timatche, gogo uyu naye should be arrested by cardiac

  30. Chatsalira says:

    Parliament should raise a motion about the HTD and Untouchables Asians. What is so special about the Asians. They should also prove their innocence in the Court of Law.

    #Patiently waiting

  31. Benardebe says:

    Mutharika is not a leader. That is why nothing improves in Malawi. People who have stayed 10 or 15 years outside Malawi are surprised that nothing tangible has changed over the past decade.

    Mutharika NEVER listens! These Indians have been stealing from Malawi for so many years. They are let scot free. You are right. The fund political parties.

  32. phiri says:

    Investigate these Indians too ngati aba amangidwe. The law should not be selective

  33. Max B says:

    No redemption at this tym because top leaders are the ones doing corruption,sorry Malawi but God will judge

  34. Ngalamayi says:

    It feels so good to read this intelligent investigative journalism on the crucial issues facing Malawi. Now for someone to stand up and deal with these issues! Long live Loose Cannon and this fresh airing of topics, events that some would like to hide forever!

  35. ndala says:

    Good article,amWenye ndi ife acikoda chimeni chasiyani ndi amwenye did not steal,anapanga deliver katundu koma achina kalonga sanapanga deliver katundu,koba basi.
    This Htd guys case is more of a fraud case ,I think more complication to the case then a corrupt reporter exposed about this story,and watch this space…….. , I will expose the reporter ! Koma ndikupempha FIU SHOULD BE SERIOSUSI with these HTD MWENYES.

  36. Chikopa says:

    Wayowoya uwemi mwana wakukaya. Let Malawians rise. Foreigners are busy eating our skin. What will be left to our kids? Enough is Enough! Aluta Continua! Economic war is just near the corner.

  37. Mutha khupe says:

    AAAAAAAAAAAAAAA UYU NDIYE WALIMALIZA BASI ZOOONA TULO IFE AMALAWI KUPUSA UMBULI ACHAWA,ALOMWE,ASENA MUKANAPHUNZIRA ANTHU INU

  38. Chimphamba cha Nedi says:

    Thom. Many thanks for the article today. Chimphamba cha Nedi yesterday thought you were not focused. Today, you are. You kept to your theme of selective justice. I hear some banks that gave out cash to Cashgaters, whatever they are called, belong to the Malawians of Asian origin. I am not an expert on this. I however, read about it at the genesis of the saga. It got quiet. The media kept quiet about it too.
    Yes, I watched live how the HTD table at the BEAM fundraising function tried to out do, was it our local entrepreneur-Mike Mlombwa table. This is how sometimes illegal business gets legitimized. These people with time become sacred cows, “untouchables”, as no one would ever want to bite the finger that feeds them.
    On a lighter note, when you tell some people that you are no coward, you shall expose yourself. A great weakness… Let me give you my thought for today. “There are times when silence has the loudest voice”. Thanks

  39. The real ujeni says:

    You see if the shaddy deals where done by a mutu bii, overzealous Malawians would be calling for the government to quickly act and bring the perpetrators to book. Look at Simama, a mutu bii , he is called a thief for building a Hotel in Lilongwe, if an Indian builds one we clap hand and call him bwana. A Northerner, a Malawian working in Blantyre and build a beautiful house, we call him name and tell him to go back north, an Asian from India not only build a house but buys acres and acres of land we clap hands and stay quiet. What sort of people are we. Let government act now on these Asians who have milked the thin country to the status of being called the poorest and malnourished country in the world

  40. Joseph says:

    You are being too modest to say ” Malawi belongs to ALL Malawians”. The REAL truth is Malawi belongs to REAL Malawians who own that citizenship BY VIRTUE OF BIRTH. These Asians are “citizens” by application!!!! Why do we allow obwera to be giving us headaches? Remember, once they are done messing up our country, they have their REAL country to go to, WE REAL MALAWIANS DO NOT!!!

  41. Kandapako says:

    Loose Cannon, rest assured this Peter Mutharika government will do nothing on this. What Malawi needs now is a total revolution and it is coming. All indicators of a revolution are evident yet Peter Mutharika can’t perceive them. When the D-Day comes Peter Mutharika will not even know what hit him.

  42. Dikisan says:

    LC; We know u. You are not like these idiots who change their stand from time to time. To me you are a star. You can change the way these thieves work in our govervnment. Tiye nawo!

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