Pressure mounts on Malawi graft-body to prosecute DPP’s Makondi, businessman Mohammad Kassam on cashgate

Reports that  the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) has compromised its operational independence by developing cold feet to arrest Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) senior official Richard Makondi and businessperson Mohammad Kassam on fraud charges have stirred unease across the nation, espe­cially within Malawi Law Society (MLS), fuelling speculations that law enforcing agencies will act.

Makondi: Said to be shielded by ACB boss Lucas Kondowe

Makondi: Said to be shielded

Press reports indicate that the graft-busting body has been sitting on warrants of arrest for Makondi, who is governing DPP national organising secretary, and Kassam of Globe Electronics over their suspected roles in Cashgate—the plunder of public resources at Capital Hill exposed in September 2013.

The law society has said the inaction of ACB is “totally unacceptable”, saying there should be no sacred cows in the criminal prosecutions.

On March 21 2016, the Blantyre Magistrate’s Court, in a Criminal Case file number 351 of 2016, granted the ACB its request to arrest Makondi and Kassam over deals estimated in hundreds of millions of taxpayers’ money at Malawi Defence Force (MDF).

MLS president John Suzi-Banda has since asked ACB to explain  why they find it appropriate to discontinue prosecuting the matter, saying the development could create an impression that there is one form of criminal justice for the poor and politically dispensable and another for the wealthy and politically connected.

ACB investigated Kossam, Makondi—a former Toyota Malawi national sales manager—alongside former MDF Commander General Henry Odillo (retired), Lieutenant General Clement Kafuwa (retired) and former Ministry of Finance budget director Paul Mphwiyo on their involvement in a deal where MDF bought about 35 vehicles from Toyota Malawi worth K895 million which the bureau claims were overvalued and did not have specifications agreed in the contract.

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Gogodasi
Guest
Gogodasi
3 months 13 days ago

The best is to kick out the whole ACB team from senior whatever to the Executive Director and replace it with new brooms.

Jean
Guest
Jean
3 months 13 days ago

“On March 21 2016, the Blantyre Magistrate’s Court … granted the ACB its request to arrest Makondi and Kassam over deals…”

Who requested the court for warrant of arrest of Makondi and Kassam? Wasn’t it the ACB? Was it you (the MLS) who ordered the ACB to ask the court for warrant of arrest for the two?

ACB knows its job. Please MLS stop dictating things and issuing orders to ACB. Let ACB be independent. Malawians don’t want ACB to be dictated by MLS, parliament, executive, or judiciary. Once again, let ACB be free and independent.

Tadala
Guest
Tadala
3 months 13 days ago

Jean, Why is the ACB now backing its own shadow by not executing the obtained warrant of arrest for two months? Even those who are to be arrested means they have their rights infringed as they are being psychologically tortured. ACB is acting unprofessional and unjust.

REX MSISKA
Guest
REX MSISKA
3 months 13 days ago
I find it very interesting reading the comment by Jean. Jean reveals a lot of anger against MLS(Malawi Law Society), not as a concerned citizen who is being dragged, everyday beyond poverty line by such act of corruption, but as one whose interest are being threatened by the MLS. If my observations are right, then i can only be sad to have such people in society, more so in a Country where its people are regrettable very poor because of corruption which is done at the highest level. Jean must know that what malawians need now is for the wheel… Read more »
Honeycomb Chidyaudzu
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Honeycomb Chidyaudzu
3 months 13 days ago

Malawi ndi dziko lometsa chisoni kwambiri. This is why we have become the poorest country in the world. This DPP Government is pathetic.

Disan
Guest
Disan
3 months 13 days ago

Do you hear Mtata any more? He has stopped. He knows how dull Malawians can be. Shame.

International Observer
Guest
International Observer
3 months 13 days ago
Theft of any sort has to be treated the same regardless of what a person holds in society. Makondi and Kassam should explain the reasons why their filthy hands were being dipped into coffers that didn’t belong to them or their mafia party (DPP). Malawi does not belong to certain individuals neither does it belong to people from the Lomwe tribe. What these people see to day is the effort other hard working and dedicated Malawians put together; possibly those who went on a self imposed exile in the western world amassed their property right there and we as Malawians… Read more »
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