Chakwera declaration of assets ‘another churchgate’

The declaration of assets by one of the presidential contenders in Tuesday elections Rev Dr Lazarus Chakwera may have been done in good faith but the move may open a pandora’s box on how church funds were administered during his tenure as President of the Assemblies of God.

Chakwera declared his assets during a news conference he held in on Saturday in Lilongwe. Among other thing he disclosed that he has three plots, a farm and three houses. —all in Lilongwe—at plot numbers Area 6/623, Area 49/5/167 and Area 10/576.

He said the Area 10 property cost him K80 million but there is still a balance of K9 million to settle.

Chakwera: My hard work
Chakwera: My hard work

An insider at Assemblies of God in Lilongwe said the ‘vast’ amount of wealth that Rev Chakwera declared can be likened to ‘churchgate’.

“Here is a pastor who can buy a plot at K80 million. We have been saying there was financial mismanagement when he was here at Assemblies of God but people thought we were doing this for politics, now you have listened to yourself the amount of money this man was handling,” he said.

He said the assets is just ‘a tip of the iceberg’ arguing that if an independent forensic audit was to be done on the books of Assemblies of God for the 24 years he has been in power, there will be a lot of revelations of financial misappropriation.

“Come on people K80 million for a pastor who is supposed to be selfless and not accumulate so much worth for his personal gain but for the sheep of God? Let’s dig deeper on this one. Otherwise how much will he come out of State House if he is elected president on Tuesday?” he wondered.

Apart from property, Chakwera also declared that he has a Mercedenz Benz which he bought through a bank loan guaranteed by Assemblies of God and a Hummer which was given to him by unnamed South Africa based businessperson or ‘wellwisher’.

Chakwera justified his assets, saying he  acquired them“through hard work. “

He said the sources of funds for his assets are “bank loans, salaries and sale of properties such as my previous houses.”

He, however, did not disclose the amount of cash he holds in his savings account at National Bank and a current account he holds at Opportunity International Bank of Malawi (OIBM).

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