Don’t shield 7 rotten ministers: Ntata quashes withholding of Malawi cashgate names

Malawi’s anti-corruption and good governance expert and also barrister of law Allan Z Ntata has asked the Peter Mutharika led government not to shield 7 corrupt ministers implicated in the forensic audit that established that about K236 billion in public funds could not be reconciliated between 2009 and December 31 2014 as it is setting a wrong precedence.

Ntata: Dont's shield corrupt ministers
Ntata: Dont’s shield corrupt ministers

Ntata a law barrister  who had previously worked at Anti Corruption Bureau (ACB) and also served as late president Bingu wa Mutharika’s legal said it is the moral responsibility of the President to check corrupt practices and should not give amnesty to his cronies to loot taxpayers’ money.

His comments comes after Auditor General (AG) Stephen Kamphasa says he has sought legal advice from the Attorney General Kalekeni Kpahle  on whether to release names and companies named in the forensic audit conducted by British firm RSM Risk Insurance LLP..

Kamphasa said there was some“legal implications” on the release of the names hence the decision to consult Attorney General

But Ntata who is heading   Independent Commission on Accountability and Transparency (iCAT) –  a citizen-led initiative to help build and ensure public accountability –  criticised the decision to withhold names in the pretext of seeking legal opinion.

“The Auditor General is unreasonable, it  is something that should not be accepted,” said Ntata said during Daybreak Malawi program aired on Capital Radio.

He added: “There is no justification to wait for Attorney General to release the cashgate names.”

“The report  need to be public information. The iddea to wait for Attorney General should not be tolerated.”

According to Ntata, seeking legal advise from government top lawyer on the cashgate ‘list of shame’, mostly the 7 rotten ministers , means giving the Executive space to keep them under wraps.

He said shielding the corrupt 7 ministers is sending wrong signals in the fight for corruption.

Presidential spokesman Mgeme Kalilani said Mutharika is not aware of  any ministers involved in the mismanagement of the public funds.

“We have to put the matter in proper prespective here. The President in not aware of any minister named in the Cashgate forensic audit,” Kalilani said.

But despite names of the Cashgate suspects being kept under wraps by the Auditor General, Stepheson Kamphasa, the details of individuals allegedly implicated have been coming out in public domain with one online publication Malawi Newsnow mentioning what it claimed was the  ‘list of shame’.

In parliament last week, Mzimba West MP Harry Mkandawire (PP) mentioned leader of the house George Chaponda as one of the  rotten ministers .

Chaponda denied any involvement.

Mkandawire said the ministers know themselves and are seving cabinet with Cashgate guilt,  sayingif they have any integrity – as one of the three pillars of national development – should no longer hold their positions.

“These Cabinet ministers know themselves and if they have a shred of honour, they should have resigned until investigations on the matter are over,” up-front talking Mkandawire said.

One of the ministers, Henry Mussa , has also been forced  to plead innocence after he was linked to the plunder.

“Out of seven cabinet ministers, why singling Henry Mussa? Where are the other five apart from Chaponda who has been named? This is a joke. I know it is a personal vendetta planned by my detractors to destroy my political career, image and credibility,” Mussa said.

He challenged anyone “to bring evidence” against his alignment into the cashgate report.

Ntata however said there is need  to “break the culture of impunity that has engulfed Malawi by encouraging and supporting the government and the legal system to punish people fairly but effectively in keeping with rule of law in Malawi’s fight against corruption”.

Corruption is a major challenge to economic development, poverty alleviation, democratic governance, the justice framework and the rule of law in many countries including Malawi. It leads to imprudent public spending and waste of public resources.

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5 years ago

A Mtata zoona. Inuyo simunatopebe. The Government is still running. 2019 is nearing. Who is a loser.

5 years ago

It is either “his comments come” or “his comment comes”!

Tozer Tsono
Tozer Tsono
5 years ago

Peter Mutharika was a minister in late Bingu Wa Mutharika’s government. Lets assume, for purposes of discussion, Peter is one of the ministers implicated, it makes sense for Kamphasa to warn Peter’s attorney general of the impending bombshell. It makes sense only because Kamphasa would be trying to protect his job but most importantly how to prosecute a former minister who is also a sitting president. If people are equal under the law, how do you prosecute individuals who committed crime before they received blanket immunity? The immunity law is encouraging Presidents to hide criminal acts. Otherwise, there is no… Read more »

5 years ago

Asiyeni azibisa mainawo, akutipatsa chonena ife . Kubisako ndi umboni kuti anabadi, koma chomwe mungadziwe ndi chakuti a Malawi akudziwa maina a nduna zakubazo ndi akuluakulu onse ku DPP amene ndi mbabva

Racist McTumbukaFace
Racist McTumbukaFace
5 years ago

It is funny how people suddenly become “Good governance and anti-corruption experts” once they fall out with powers that be!

Mukati iCAT is a citizen led initiative, citizen wake mukutanthauza Chikumbutso Mtumodzi? Kkkikki.

A Tom tikudziwa munali limodzi ku another NDA koma musamaunjeze kukometsera!

Mumuudzetsu Ntatayo angoyamba kusunga ndevu chifukwa eeh ! chigama chake ndiye chauma ndi malezaratu!

bentry smart
5 years ago

i think peter muthalika is also shortlisted on the list of those thieves since during bingu erra he was an active minister, he is trying to shield his fellow merceless thieves. malawi is in doldrum just because of few tribal thieves. woe to those who voted for these thieves,.

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