Malawi President fires minister Chaponda over ‘Maizegate’ scandal

Malawi’s Minister of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development, George Chaponda has been fired by President Peter Mutharika, the first top government figure to be pushed out to pave way for smooth investigations towards the suspicious maize purchase from Zambia, State House has confirmed.

Chaponda: Fired

Several quarters including the Malawi Law Society, Opposition Members of Parliament and the Civil Society community have been asking  President Mutharika to fire Chaponda for his involvement and implication in the controversial maize deal.

Leader of opposition Lazarus Chakwera said the President “needs to to the needful” to have Chaponda sacked.

And on Wednesday President Mutharika cracked the whip and fired his trusted minister.

Presidential spokesman Mgeme Kalilani confirmed to Nyasa Times in a statement.

“This is to inform the public that using powers vested in him by the Constitution, His Excellency the President, Prof. Arthur Peter Mutharika has decided to relieve Dr. George Chaponda; M.P of his responsibilities as Minister of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development with immediate effect.

“ With this development, all matters requiring the attention of the Minister of Agriculture should be referred to the President,” Kalilani said.

The sack comes after the Ati Corruption Bureau (ACB) raided Chaponda’s residence in Lilongwe where they conducted a search and seizure exercise.

During the exercise ACB seized cash between US$58,000 and MK127 million which was found stashed in suitcases.ACB deputy director general Mr Reyneck Matemba confirmed the amounts.

Blantyre-based private practice lawyer Jai Banda who is an expert in financial crimes and money laundering said there is no law that stipulates the maximum aount of money a person can keep on him.

But Banda said ACB can use the Corrupt Practices Act to prosecute Chapona if he fails to explain how he got the money.

Banda also said there is no crime in keeping foreign currency but it should be proved that Chaponda obtained it from a legal dealer.

ACB director general Lucas Kondowe said he could not discuss the operation in the media because the bureau “is a constitutional body” thar operates independently.

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Tione
Guest

U MP avulidwenso mfiti imeneyi. Mxiew!

Yahya Jammeh
Guest
Santana why are you so dull to say all this nonesnse. The fact that Jai Banda said that there is no law that specifies how much money one keep in the house does not mean Chaponda can escape the whip of the law. Do you know how the law is applied to suspects of crimes? Jai Banda clearly said the ACB can use the Corruption Act to pin down Chaponda, you mean you didn’t read this? After all, Chaponda is not the first person to be found with millions of money in the house. How about Lutepo, Kalonga and others,… Read more »
Imbwa
Guest

Spot on. Chitsiru Santana has been caught pants down and, if he is not that dull, he is able to see the house crumbling around him nanga si wadya zambiri zakuba za DPP. You know these fools have been thinking this country belonging to them only

winston msowoya
Guest
One misguided contributor wrote that Chaponda has been fired because APM is from the NORTH.What a shame? For his information,Northerners do not have harlequin and brainless people like Peter Muthalika. We produce brilliant and highly professional cadres that is why Malawi is independent today,without that,we could be still under colonial domination.Look at what Banda did to the people of Malawi,look at Muluzi,look at Bingu and finally,look at J. Banda, all these fools and inept ex-leaders came from the South and Central Malawi,so why the Northerners face barbaric attitudes from other Malawians day in day out. Afterall, Northerners have never been… Read more »
paul jones
Guest

aliyemse amene ali mbali ya mbava ziwilizi APM and Caponda will go to Hail. this is insane. stealing tax payers money and its a shame that the tax payerr themselvs dnt knw that itr their money.

Patrick yohane super
Guest

now days eish too bad now how country can develop with such ways?

The Analyst
Guest
O……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..O Yes Chaponda’s firing is the right thing to do but I dont think this is a cause for celebration. Kodi . . . . . What has it taken us for APM to make this decision, if not CSO’s running around (threatening with demos etc), and Members of Parliament (abandoning all national duties) jeering and booing? . . . Should people wait to be pushed and threatened (with demos etc) for them to act? Let APM know that his continued indecisiveness (tulo/kugona) is costing this country a lot. Nanga . . . Who doesn’t know that Chaponda should have… Read more »
santana
Guest
Wait a minute!!!! Why is Chaponda fired? The ACB went to Chaponda’s house to find out if there are some sensitive documents which could be used in the ”maize scam”. What have the ACB told us about such documents if any? If the issue of kwachas and dollars was not there what would be the news after the search? People commenting here have totally forgotten about the primary aim of the ACB’s mission to Chaponda’s house. Jai Banda has said that legally there can be nothing for an open case for Chaponda for the only reason that he kept money… Read more »
Tione
Guest
Iwe Satana, Do you know the saying “Khoswe wapadenga adaulula wapadzala?” This is exactly what has happened or we wouldn’t have known that someone was keeping such a large amount that kept devaluing while just being kept idle. We’ve been complaining of abused & missing funds. Don’t you think this money is part of the abused & missing funds? Had he gotten it legally, he would have banked it but he feared the bank would have got suspicious. You are a complete fool as you don’t think sensibly. Maybe ndi ambuyako & you have benefited from all this loot. I’d… Read more »
Ine Ndi One
Guest

You are a complete idiot.

mbooga kamfumu
Guest

chaponda ndi big ali chete munthu opanda manyazi kulimba ntima ngati mfiti yaikazi yaku mulenje kapena kuti mfiti yachilomwe eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee nyete zenizeni pamtumbo

smoko
Guest

Iwe Joseph Nkasa apa Nde unenapo Chiani? Imbansotu za Chaponda wakoyo tikumvele. Osamangotengeka zilizonse adzakuchotsanipo mano nkhani zosakukhudzani. Shupiti. Mwina nawenso unanyambitako nao zachimangazi eti? Tikufufuza basi.

Tifelanji
Guest

Onse mumachita sapoti munthu wakubayu mudadziwika nonse, amene mumangolikwira zinthu ndi kumawombera m’manja zinthu zoipa. Apa nanunso you shall be taken to justice. People had been crying to God to put all thieves on open, now things have started to happen. Soon all of them shall be exposed, including you fake supporters. Mdzasowa chowilingula.

wpDiscuz

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