Activists, Civil Society hail Chakwera’s corruption zero tolerance drive

Renowned political analysts and the Civil Society in the country says Malawi President Lazarus Chakwera deserves a round of applause for taking a tough stance against acts of corruption involving his government’s own big-wigs.

The activists say Chakwera has set a tone of zero tolerance on corruption and bribery with the arrest of senior officials from some of the big partners of the governing Tonse Alliance administration.

Mvula says President is sending powerful message

“The arrests of a senior UTM official, an MCP top dog and Aford’s president is a clear but strong message to those in government that nobody is safe when it comes to the rule of law.

“Here is a strong message that the president will not entertain anyone in his circle if they find themselves on the wrong side of the law,” said a Lilongwe-based Godwin Mbepula, a political scientist and Human Rights Activist.

The Anti – Corruption Bureau (ACB) on Monday nabbed Chakwera’s aide on strategy Chris Chaima Banda, Minister of Energy Newton Kambala and a partner to the ruling Tonse government – Alliance for Democracy (AFORD) President Enoch Chihana.

The trio are facing charges of attempting to influence a public officer to abuse public office over awarding of contracts in line with the procurement of fuel through the National Oil Company of Malawi (NOCMA) Chief Executive Officer, Helen Buluma.

The three are alleged to have been using their positions trying to cut corners in a multi – million kwacha fuel procurement process at NOCMA.

Last week, Police arrested another presidential aide, Pastor Martin Thom, for allegedly being involved in the smuggling of a loan authorization bill to parliament.

Thom who has since been relieved of his duties is currently out on bail but he quickly travelled to the United States of America (USA)

Renowned social commentator and tele-political analyst Mvula said the recent arrests have shown that the president is serious at clearing the rubble as promised during the campaign period.

According to Mvula, President Chakwera is trying to do away with the perception that ministers or top government aides cannot be arrested when they commit crimes.

“This is the first time that the president has allowed state agencies such as Police and ACB to pounce on his close advisors including a minister.

“Advisors have been insulated by the leadership. The president is sending a very strong signal that it is possible to fight corruption,” emphasized Mvula.

He added: “These are critical individuals in the Tonse government and the decision taken is very significant.

“The fact that the president did not prevent these arrests from happening shows that we are in for serious business and all criminal in government should take cover.”

However, Mvula says there should be no sacred cows and that the responsible state agencies should carry out their duties without fear or favor to ensure that the cases are concluded to the latter.

Meanwhile, the National Anti – Corruption Alliance (NASA), a grouping of civil society organizations has commended ACB for the arrests.

In a statement signed by its Chairperson Moses Mkandawire, the alliance calls on the ACB and other relevant authorities to complete their investigations with diligence and to prosecute those with a case to answer without delay and according to international standards.

“As an alliance, we reiterate our call for expeditious establishment of the financial crimes court to fast track and efficiently dispose of cases of corruption and theft of public funds which remain prevalent in the country,” reads part of the statement.

The alliance also called on President Chakwera to fire the minister and his advisor to pave way for effective investigations and prosecutions of the matter.

By Cedric Nkungula – Nyasa Times

Renowned political analysts and the Civil Society in the country says Malawi President Lazarus Chakwera deserves a round of applause for taking a tough stance against acts of corruption involving his government’s own big-wigs.

The activists say Chakwera has set a tone of zero tolerance on corruption and bribery with the arrest of senior officials from some of the big partners of the governing Tonse Alliance administration.

“The arrests of a senior UTM official, an MCP top dog and Aford’s president is a clear but strong message to those in government that nobody is safe when it comes to the rule of law.

“Here is a strong message that the president will not entertain anyone in his circle if they find themselves on the wrong side of the law,” said a Lilongwe-based Godwin Mbepula, a political scientist and Human Rights Activist.

The Anti – Corruption Bureau (ACB) on Monday nabbed Chakwera’s aide on strategy Chris Chaima Banda, Minister of Energy Newton Kambala and a partner to the ruling Tonse government – Alliance for Democracy (AFORD) President Enoch Chihana.

The trio are facing charges of attempting to influence a public officer to abuse public office over awarding of contracts in line with the procurement of fuel through the National Oil Company of Malawi (NOCMA) Chief Executive Officer, Helen Buluma.

The three are alleged to have been using their positions trying to cut corners in a multi – million kwacha fuel procurement process at NOCMA.

Last week, Police arrested another presidential aide, Pastor Martin Thom, for allegedly being involved in the smuggling of a loan authorization bill to parliament.

Thom who has since been relieved of his duties is currently out on bail but he quickly travelled to the United States of America (USA)

Renowned social commentator and tele-political analyst Mvula said the recent arrests have shown that the president is serious at clearing the rubble as promised during the campaign period.

According to Mvula President Chakwera is trying to do away with the perception that ministers or top government aides cannot be arrested when they commit crimes.

“This is the first time that the president has allowed state agencies such as Police and ACB to pounce on his close advisors including a minister.

“Advisors have been insulated by the leadership. The president is sending a very strong signal that it is possible to fight corruption,” emphasized Mvula.

He added: “These are critical individuals in the Tonse government and the decision taken is very significant.

“The fact that the president did not prevent these arrests from happening shows that we are in for serious business and all criminal in government should take cover.”

However, Mvula says there should be no sacred cows and that the responsible state agencies should carry out their duties without fear or favor to ensure that the cases are concluded to the latter.

Meanwhile, the National Anti – Corruption Alliance (NASA), a grouping of civil society organizations has commended ACB for the arrests.

In a statement signed by its Chairperson Moses Mkandawire, the alliance calls on the ACB and other relevant authorities to complete their investigations with diligence and to prosecute those with a case to answer without delay and according to international standards.

“As an alliance, we reiterate our call for expeditious establishment of the financial crimes court to fast track and efficiently dispose of cases of corruption and theft of public funds which remain prevalent in the country,” reads part of the statement.

The alliance also called on President Chakwera to fire the minister and his advisor to pave way for effective investigations and prosecutions of the matter.

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Big Brother
1 month ago

Za ziii! Zopanda mchere izi. Andale ndi chonchi amangana lero, mmawa awatulusa, ikatero milandu yathu. Musamaombele mfiti mmanja, anthuwa ndi amodzi. Pomangana kuchita kutumizilana kaye SMS kuti ndikumanga koma osanda ukakhalako two days utuluka kkkkkkkk. Malawi anaola uyu

Political Analyst
1 month ago

Why does the name of Chakwera come in when his policy says he will not interfere with the ACB. It shows that we still have a feeling that the President controls ACB. He has a different leadership styles of letting institutions do their responsibility without interference.

Political Analyst
1 month ago

I now understand why JZU rebuffed Chris Chaima Banda when he Chris challenged JZU’s MCP presidency in 2008. JZU ndi machine.

Hotlips
Hotlips
1 month ago

I think Helen Buluma is the one that deserves kudos for not cowering…

Hotlips
Hotlips
1 month ago

Let’s not clap hands yet, we don’t know when he might apologize to these individuals!

Mdala
Mdala
1 month ago
Reply to  Hotlips

We hear Ken Kandodo is coming back…? Ĺets hope this will not go the same lane!

Mzwanya
Mzwanya
1 month ago

But something is not adding up on the flying of Thom Martin to the USA after obtaining a bail!!! How can the same administration allow a person who is on bail travel?

cairo
cairo
1 month ago

Pastor Martin Thom, how was he allowed to travel, thats the question. We appreciate what has been done so far but we still wonder, why was the Pastor allowed to travel and yet he was on bail? Does the law allow that? I dont think so. There is something fishy going on with the President.

Sikusinja
Sikusinja
1 month ago

These arrests happen all the time. Chaponda was arrested before. Bingu arrested some Yusuf minister, JB arrested her own Ralph etc. Maybe it’s not Chakwera who is tough but the arresting officials are not scared of top govt officials anymore. If Chakwera was tough he would be firing them after reading about anyone bringing shame to his administration. Helen reported this long time ago. He cud have fired Kambala then and Chaima.

Gabriel
Gabriel
1 month ago

Bravo ACB!! Bravo Mr President!!

Banda
Banda
1 month ago

The three arrested for alleged corruption should request a leave of absence or resign as a sign of integrity from their positions. If the President fires them no doubt the government will pay compensation should the trial not proceed or be forced to pay monthly wages until conviction. At the moment these are allegations not convictions.

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