Malawi losing 30% of budget money to corruption

Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) director Justice Rezine Mzikamanda  has said 30 percent of  government’s  budget money does not finance the intended projects but instead disappears into the corruption abyss.

Justice Mzikamanda said during the launch of a corruption and fraud reduction policy in Malawi’s capital Lilongwe on Friday.

“Research has shown that most African countries including Malawi lose 30 percent of their budget money to corruption which is very bad,” said Mzikamanda, who pledged that ACB will work round the clock to combat the malpractice.

The revelation means that for the 2013-2014 financial year, Malawi is likely to lose about K200 billion out of its K639 billion budget money to corruption.

Justice Mzikamanda: ACB will bust on corrupt barons
Justice Mzikamanda: ACB will bust on corrupt barons

Finance minister Ken Lipenga, who spoke at the function,  admitted the existence of “rampant corruption in the country” describing it as “evil and unfair to the people who are supposed to meaningfully benefit from government coffers.”

He cited the fertilizer subsidy programme as one of government’s projects that registers hefty corruption cases.

Malawi, one of the world’s poorest countries with most of her population surviving on less than a dollar a day, gets 40 percent of her budget money from donors.

Politicians, especially in top government positions, are criticized by Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) for luxurious living and sinister ways of accumulating money.

About two weeks ago, local media reported that at the time of his death President Bingu wa Mutharika, whose wealth was only about K150 million when he entered office in 2004, had controversially accumulated over K61 billion.

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