Chairperson of the board of directors for State-produce trader Agricultural Development and Marketing Corporation (Admarc), James Masumbu has said the chief executive officer Foster Mulumbe and his team by-passed the board in the controversial Zambian maize procurement saga.
Masumbu, a lawyer who has been retained as chairperson after the new board was appointed by President Peter Mutharika this week, told Times Radio on Tuesday that the board was not consulted in the import deal.
“The board was only informed about plans to borrow money from the PTA Bank for the purchase of maize,”Masumbu told the radio.
Masumbu said Mulumbe and his team did not consult the board regarding who should supply the maize and at what price.
“The board was consulted to allow Admarc to borrow money from PTA bank. Regarding what happened next after that process, we were not consulted,” Masumbu said.
President Peter Mutharika has since set up a commission of inquiry to probe matters surrounding the import deal.
But Parliamentary Committees—Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development and Public Accounts— are calling for Admarc boss Mulumbe to be suspended until the investigations are through.
The parliamentary Public Accounts committee is also calling on the inquiry to be “inclusive” by incorporating members of the civil society, parliamentarians and other stakeholders.
Malawi government may have lost billions of kwacha out of the K26 billion it borrowed from PTA bank to enable Admarc to buy maize from Zambia through Zambia Cooperative Federation (ZCF).
However, Admarc engaged a privately-owned Zambian company Kaloswe Commuter and Courier Limited which played the role of middleman in the deal.
Admarc reportedly paid about K26 billion which government borrowed from the PTA Bank for the purchase of the maize which is about K9.5 billion more than the estimated K15 billion it could have paid had it bought the maize directly from the Zambian Government.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :