Court defers ruling on Mphwiyo, 18 others in K2.4 bn ‘cashgate’: 2 suspects fail to show up

The High Court in Lilongwe has reserved until next week Tuesday its ruling  on whether former Budget Director Paul Mphwiyo and 18 others have a case to answer over involvement in the cashgate scandal, the biggest corruption scandal in Malawi’s history that took place in 2013.

Mphwiyo and another suspect Stafford Mpoola (r) at the court.-Photo by Lisa Kadango
Mphwiyo: Coming out of court.-Photo by Lisa Kadango

Mphwiyo and others were charged with conspiracy to defraud government, holding property belonging to government, theft, money laundering, fraudulently issuing 24 cheques worth K2.4 billion, abuse of public office and usage of proceeds of crime.

The Cashgate scandal saw about K24 billion public funds vanish in six months when Joyce Banda was president of the country.

Delivering of the determination by the court has been postponed  because two of the suspects did not show up in court as they are reportedly sick.

Justice Esmie Chombo told lawyers that the ruling is crucial and cannot be delivered in the absence of the concerned parties.

Two of the 19 suspects—Gerald Magareta Phiri and Andrews Chilalika—were absent due to health reasons.

The former budget director was shot at the gate of his Area 43 residence in Lilongwe on September 13 2013 and former minister of Justice and Constitutional Affairs Ralph Kasambara, businessperson Pika Manondo, Dauka Manondo, Robert Kadzuwa and Macdonald Kumwembe   were convicted  and jailed after being found guilty of attempted murder and conspiracy to commit murder.

Kasambara remains a convict but was released on bail from prison after serving sentence months pending an appeal in the Supreme Court.

It is believed that Mphwiyo’s shooting opened a can of worms that exposed the plunder of public resources at Capital Hill widely known as Cashgate.

Former president Joyce Banda ordered a forensic audit which was undertaken by a British firm, RSM ( formerly Baker Tilly), covering the period between April and September 2013.

The audit established that about K24 billion was siphoned from the public coffers through dubious payments, inflated invoices of goods or services never rendered.

In May 2015, a financial analysis report by audit and business advisory firm PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) also established that about K577 billion in public funds could not be reconciled between 2009 and December 31 2014.

However, the K577 billion figure was later revised downwards to K236 billion by another British forensic auditor.

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Indianocean
Indianocean
9 months ago

I just want to say that his face mask looks really weird. It looks even stranger on my tiny phone screen as if it were not a mask, but a rotten mouth like a zombie’s. When I zoomed the picture in, it looks like an underwear…
Seriously, no offence, it is correct to wear a mask at this juncture as an excellent example to the public, unlike those irresponsible politicians, who rally without any masks or social distance and care about merely the election, but OMG that is an ugly mask.

Mofolo
Mofolo
9 months ago

haha haha A Judge ameneyo? did you see the medical certificate? which hospital issued the report? for how long has these persons been sick? or are you just trying to run away from delivering the decision? Why you as a judge did not move the court to the premises where these people are being hospitalised? are they sick at home or hospital? Dont fool Malawians ndalama zathu zinabedwa mwachisawawa ndi anthu amenewa. Ndipo nkhani imeneyi ikanatha kale kale koma mpaka pano. Amenewa ndi ma delaying tactics. tikufuna chilungamo

Nzika
Nzika
9 months ago

Masiki ngati patela njuchi?
Kasambala ati Ali pa Belo, koma dziko ili ndi ma judge athu

lima
9 months ago

Komatu Ndalama zonse munabazo ma suit ake amenewo ? Ngati achikumbe kkkkkkk nde matama . kuyaluka …

Flamingo
Flamingo
9 months ago

Mphwyo, chilima , kasambara and JB yooo

Gabor
Gabor
9 months ago
Reply to  Flamingo

Where is Joyce Banda here in the court case as a thief? Vuto la amaliwe sitifuna kuululidwa ndichimene chinapweteketsa a Joyce Banda. Amaonangati akukonza polengeza kuti mbavazi zifufuzidwe. Muulamulilo wa bakili muluzis Bingu wa Mutharika ndalama zimasololedwa mpaka ena pa malilo awo kupezeka ndi ma box box of dollars Koma anali ziiiii osatengapo Mbali yotsutsa the character of stealing the government money zinanso ndi izi zili mu bomamu eish . Aka cash gate Joyce Banda even Zaka ziwiri pampando osalwana, it’s unfair please.

Accused Number One
Accused Number One
9 months ago

Justtice for the rich moves at a snail pace….

Zio ine
Zio ine
9 months ago

Just lock the bastard up and they should be attending court from prison

Vabe
Vabe
9 months ago

Joyce Banda, the BIG thief of CASHGATE is in TONSE Alliance.

Jetu
9 months ago

Malawi courts have become a joke and a mockery of justice. The worst on earth. Too much vermin and scum at the top. Needs a complete overhaul. Greed, nepotism and corruption are their main pillars.

Herb
Herb
9 months ago

These politicians azingotiyimba. Same people in both parties. Guys let’s choose a new party with new people. Let’s vote Peter Kuwani and Mbakuwaku. Mwina tiwone completely new faces and not this circus.

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