Secretary for Health Dan Namalika and other officials have bought cars from their ministry in a public auction which Finance Minister Goodall Gondwe has described as illegal and observers call asset stripping.
The local press has acquired documents detailing how the sale of the vehicles were done in the Ministry of Health anf Population Services despite the law prohibiting employees of a procuring and disposing public entity from bidding for its auctioned assets.
Namalika has reportedly bought himself two vehicles—a 15 tonner Iveco lorry registration MG870 AC and a Toyota Hilux D4D—031MG1836 at a value we could not independently verify.
Apart from Namalika, drivers, a member of the Internal procurement and Disposal Committee, a departmental head and a district health officer
shared the spoils.
Finance Minister Goodall Gondwe has stressed that employees of a disposing public entity are not expected to benefit from such disposal based on the Public Procurement and Disposal of Assets (PPDA) Act of 2017 which is currently in force.
According to the PPDA Act of 2017, employees and relatives of a disposing public entity are not allowed to participate in the auction.
“A procuring and disposing entity shall not enter into a procurement or disposal contract with its employee, or any close relative of any employee,” reads Section 35 of the new law.
The law particularly emphasises that all disposal proceedings should be conducted in a manner which promotes transparency, accountability and fairness, according to Section 38, which also provides alternative ways of disposing assets.
Observers say the actions amounted to asset stripping, and authorities are asked to investigate the sale and take appropriate action.
Namalika confirmed to have bought the cars in question but insisted they were worn out and would cost him more money to have them function properly.
Minister of Health Atupele Muluzi said he was not aware of the present auction of cars save for one done last year which followed procedures.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :