The Indigenous Business Association of Malawi (IBAM) has said the Capital Hill financial disorder and the on-going ‘clean-up exercise’ has brought indigenous business to a stand-still.
IBAM President, Mike Mlombwa, said this when journalists chanced on him at Capital Hotel in Lilongwe and sought his views on the development.
Mlombwa said it was very unfortunate that IBAM, an already struggling association, was at the receiving end of the Capital Hill financial plunder by being squeezed into a corner as far as business is concerned.
“Much as we are impressed with government’s initiatives in trying to get to the bottom of this whole scam, we, the indigenous business people are suffering because we cannot get our payment from government.
“Consequently, we cannot get new orders and business has just come to a stand-still.” complained Mlombwa.
The IBAM president described the development as very unhealthy for the association considering that from the 100 percent government’s hiring cake, the indigenous business community gets a meager 10 percent share of business while the foreign business fraternity gets 90 percent.
Mlombwa further expressed dissatisfaction on the fact that the ones caught as suspects in the Capital Hill plunder, now commonly known as the Cash-gate Scandal, are all indigenous people, except one whom he claimed was mentioned only once.
“As IBAM, I’d like to make it clear here that the master-minders of all those non-existent businesses and companies which were offered dubious contracts without delivering are foreigners,” alleged Mlombwa, and added: “We have always urged government to scrutinize the foreign business people because we have seen people starting a business with a modest amount today, but drawing hundreds of millions, or billions within weeks.”
The indigenous business tycoon called for collective efforts in the healing of the weakened financial system and he further encouraged government to scrutinize the Integrated Financial Management Information System and to continue engaging experts in monitoring and updating of the system.
“Quitting the system would not be a solution,” said Mlombwa, and went on: “I’m told that the system is very good and it has worked in many countries. What we need is to have experts monitor it and update it on regular basis to avoid a similar experience.”–Mana