BP&P play down K60m swindle report

Malawi’s printing and publishing giant, Blantyre Printing and Publishing (BP&P) has  played down report that it has lost a cool K60 million to a ‘middleman’ who was going to help them purchase a state of the art printing machine in Italy.

Nyasa Times reported on Wednesday that Managing Director Leonnard Chikadya and Dr Tikhala Chibwana, general manager for Blantyre Newspapers Limited (BNL), a subsidiary of BP&P, travelled to Italy recently to have a look at the machine and engaged the middle man to finalise the deal on their behalf .

But after partying away with  K60 million, part of the money  a loan from a commercial bank,  the middleman is reported to be at large.

Chikadya: No middleman involved in the deal

“BP&P Times Group says as Malawi’s market leader in printing and publishing industry it will continue to buy state-of-art equipment from credible suppliers using proper channels,” the company said in a statement after the Nyasa Times story.

Refutal

The company said besides the five colour printing machine for commercial jobs and two computer-to-plate equipment it has bought in the recent past in line with advances in modern technology, it is in the process of buying a state-of art news web for printing its newspapers and related publications.

According to the statement posted on the company’s news website,  the management claimed “there is no middleman involved in the deal.”

It also said  money paid for the machine was not borrowed from a bank “ but came from its own resources.”

The statement said the assertion that the media company has been swindled is “laughable as it is born out of malice and there is no factual element in it.”

The statement disowned Chikadya’s quote by Nyasa Times reporter that the “machine will be here by the end of August .”

But nonetheless pointed out that the agreed delivery of the machine as per contract is August.

The statement says  Roberts Graphics of the UK are supplying the equipment to BP& P Times.

The company made no comment or reference to the story about the  10 % increment for staff

BP&P own BNL which publishes Malawi’s oldest newspaper The Daily Times and four other titles namely Malawi NewsWeekend TimesBusiness Times and The Sunday Times..

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