Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Mary Kachale told the High Court in Lilongwe on Tuesday that he was not pleased with the report of the on-going K2.4billion Capital Hill Cashgate trials that involves gunshot survivor, former budget director Paul Montfort Mphwiyo and 18 others which appeared on Nyasa Times indicating that fifth witness Kondwani Munthali had implicated Daliso Kabambe and Radson Mwadiwa who worked as budget director and former Secretary to Treasury.
She said Munthali’s testimony was sensetionalised in its meaning, saying the report is part of “cheap tactics against the State.”
Kachale asked the media reporting the Cashgate cases to exercice “decency and civility.”
Judge Esmie Chombo said misrepresentation of proceeding s is unacceptable and that she may be forced ti use relevant legal provisions in barring the media from covering the case.
The State then paraded its sixth witness in the case., Phillip Thoko Majiga, working in the ministry of Finance and economic Planning as Budget officer since he joined the ministry in 2011, presented to the court the role in the Budget Division office of Cash management section where he was base.
Among others, Majiga told the court that his role was to consolidate cash-flow, participate in budget preparation, releasing the approved funds to the Ministries and other government agencies.
He told the court that once the budget had been passed in June, each ministry and agency sent detailed funds request with supported documents like certificate of a project or the letter to support its request to fund the named project.
When asked by the top prosecutor to explain to the court how the funds request are made and to who the certificates he was referring to are sent to, Majiga said “Ministry funds requests always comes with a certificate of completion of a project or a letter from the ministry for the funds to be approved, these certificates or letters are sent to the Secretary to Treasury and the ST refers the Budget Director who refers to the deputy budget director who give us to start working on it.”
He told the court that at a preliminary stage they compile the funds proposal and submit it to the deputy budget director who takes them to the Budget director.
In his testimony, Majiga said a Budget Director look at the proposed funds request if they are within their approved budget and in some cases they reduce the proposed funds or might increase.
“We as technocrats we just do the donkey work of coming up with figures then we submit it to deputy budget director who recommends it to the Budget director and the budget director propose it to the ST who approves the funds to be made and it is sent back to us with a signature of the three and the word approved by the ST,” he said
After he was showed one of the loose minute funds request dated 5th July,2013 for approval of K36 million vote 060 under ministry of tourism if he recognized it, Majiga identified the paper as one of the documents kept in his office and that was signed by Mr. P. Pondelani as deputy budget director recommending, Dr Dalitso Kabambe as budget director proposing the funds and Mr. Radson Mwadiwa as Secretary to treasury approving it.
Another document showed that by 12th July, 2013 P. Pondelani was still deputy budget director and Dr Kabambe no longer was holding the post as budget director as it was Paul Mphwiyo now as budget director while Mwadiwa was still the Secretary to Treasury.
When he was asked by Kachale to say his view or perception towards Mphwiyo, Majiga told the court that Mphwiyo was a “motivational manager” .
Majiga told the court that it was during monthly reconciliation, the first week of September between the 2nd and 3rd September, 2013 that he noted the over expenditure of ministry of Tourism which was high than its approved figures.
The ministry had spent over K5.5 billion in July, August and September 2013 instead of about K1.3 that was approved.
“I was surprised as it was new to me, it never happened to me, I wanted to hear more from someone who knows it better than me, I thought maybe it was the system that had a problem, I was overwhelmed and surprised, I reported this do deputy budget director Mr. Pondelani”, he explained.
He told the court that by the second week of September (9th and 10th) the ministry had over spent with over K3 billion against its approved funds and he shared the findings with Mr. Pondelani and Chief Economist Daniel Jenya who was also trying to find out what was happening after he too noted the over expenditure by the ministry of tourism.
The defence lawyers are expected to cross examine Majiga on Wednesday.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :