State House has confirmed that President Joyce Banda directed management of State House to stop procurement of vehicles for Presidential Security despite the loss of three Hammers and three Land Rovers in view of the prevailing economic situation.
Presidential Press Secretary Steven Nhlane confirmed to Nyasa Times that President Banda had instead directed management to make use of available vehicles within the system.
In an exclusive interview with Nyasa Times, Nhlane said it is true that management was investigating the possibility of replacing vehicles for Presidential Security but the Head of State stopped the move, though necessary.
“The pressure to replace the damaged vehicles is a longstanding one,” said Nhlane, adding: “The main problem is that the vehicles cannot be replaced because they were in the past being driven on substandard fuel,, fuel mixed with water or paraffin.”
The Presidential spokesman said the dealers had said the damaged vehicles were beyond repair.
He said management sought final authority on the matter from the President who directed it to make use of available vehicles within the system.
With the campaign for tripartite elections in its second official week some quarters were spreading rumours that State House wants to procure vehicles for the campaign.
The opposition United Democratic Front (UDF ) whose torch bearer is the former president’s son, Atupele Muluzi has bought a fleet of brand new vehicles for the campaign.
Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) has also bought some cars for the torch bearer’s motorcade.