Attorney General Thabo Nyirenda hails High Court for Sober Judgement

He claimed close to a staggering K1 billion against the government, an agreement to pay was agreed, but when the new attorney general was appointed, he challenged the claim as obscene and an unjustifiable self-enriching plot to defraud the taxpayers’ money and the court agreed with the Government’s chief legal advisor and awarded him K18 million as a fair compensation and not what the bloated and exaggerated amount asked.

Malawi’s Attorney General Thabo Chakaka Nyirenda says he is buoyed by the recent court judgment in which taxpayers money amounting to over K900 million has been saved in a self-enriching exaggerated labour claim to stop a load of fraudulent claims against the government.

Said Chakaka Nyirenda: “I would like to thank the High Court, the Industrial Relations Division, for a sober judgment it has meted out in a case involving a former government official who was demanding unreasonable amount of taxpayers’ money as this will be set as a precedent that people have to be reasonable when demanding money from the government.

AG Chakaka Nyirenda

“I am so happy that we have been able to save millions of taxpayers money and with this I am geared to fight all unreasonable claims against the government to ensure that no one just gets huge sums of money from the public favours unreasonably.”

Chakaka Nyirenda said his office has a list of claims which they will be challenging in the courts in order to save state resources.

Last week, the Industrial Relations Courts awarded a former Principal Secretary (PS) for the Local Government K18 million out of close to K1 billion he was demanding from the government for unfair labour practices.

The judgment came after the head of the bar and government’s chief legal  advisor, Chakaka Nyirenda challenged an earlier consent order that settled Makileni’s claim at K754 Million.

But Nyirenda said after examining the claim, he was not satisfied as to why such a huge sum of amount was agreed in an out of court settlement.

“When I looked at the material facts of the claim and the agreed amount of money, I thought it was insane and unreasonable and that is why I challenged it and the courts agreed with me that indeed the amount claimed and settled was far too high, unreasonable and a self-enrichment syndicate to defraud the government,” said Chakaka Nyirenda.

Makileni dragged the Attorney General and Office of the President to court after being dissatisfied with the way he was being treated when he was transferred to the OPC from the Ministry of Local Government.

The former PS claimed that he was not given an official vehicle and an office from 2014 to 2020 .

In his ruling , Chairperson of the Industrial Relations Court , Howard Pemba, agreed with the Attorney General that the claim was unreasonable, and therefore, determined that the only loss that Makileni suffered is the use of a private motor vehicle since he is still an employee of government.

The Court also observed that the use of the private vehicle by Makileni was not from 2014 to 2020 because there is a time he, Makileni, took a vehicle from Local Government, which he was using as part of his entitlement.

“In the view of all these, the court believes that an award of K18, 097,916,70 which represents his loss for one year will be fair and equitable for unfair labour practice,” Pemba ruled.

“It’s a huge relief to tax payers because a lot of money have been saved and in the future, with this sober judgment in place as a precedent, people will not be abusing claims against the government when seeking for redress,” Chakaka said.

Chakaka Nyirenda said on behalf of the taxpayers, he is very thankful to the court for the sober and just judgment as the money saved will go a long way in serving the interests of millions of people in the country through social services.

Said Chakaka Nyirenda: “We have so many exaggerated claims which I am reviewing and pursuing such as those brought by Batawalala and Shiraz Ferreira.”

The Attorney General is also tussling against Mulli Brothers over a K3.8 billion claim.

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