The Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA) board chair Eric Chapola has resigned with immediate effect following a directive from government to opt out.
Secretary to Treasury Ben Borolo asked Chapola to resign from his position just because his sister has cross path with the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) – a clear case of retribution.
And Chapola, who is a chartered insurer and chief executive officer for the multibillion kwacha turnover Nico Insurance Company Limited – a subsidiary of listed financial services and investment group Nico Holdings plc-, has tendered his resignation to oblige to the directive.
“I was asked to resign from the position of MRA board chairperson. No reasons were given for the decisions,” said Chapola.
Chapola said it was government which approached him to be board chair of the public tax collector and he accepted to serve.
“This time around, they have also requested me to leave and I have oblidged,” he said.
Finance, Economic Planning and Development Minister Goodall Gondwe acknowledged that Chapola was a hard-working leader in MRA Board whose stewardship of the authority’s strategic direction helped to increase revenue collection.
However, sources say the start performer Chapola has been asked to resign because of political affiliation of his sister, former first lady Callista Mutharika – the widow of former president Bingu wa Mutharika and incumbent President Peter Mutharika’s sister-in-law.
Callista is involved with the newly formed United Transformation Movement (UTM) that is promoting the presidential candidacy of Vice-president Saulos Chilima.
She argues that Chilima was the country’s hope for a better future.
President Mutharika picked Chilima, then Airtel Malawi managing director, as his running mate in February 2014. The pair campaigned from the opposition and wrestled power from then president Joyce Banda and her People’s Party (PP).
Mutharika said he settled for Chilima from a possible list of 40 potential running mates because he was decisive and assertive