Chairperson of the Muslim Association of Malawi (MAM) Sheikh Idrissa Muhammad is under intense attack by some concerned Muslims in Malawi who are accusing him of diverting associations’ money into his personal account and money laundering.
A concerned Muslim Rafick Alison alleges that Sheikh Muhammad was at one time admitted having putting donor money into his pockets a move he says has propelled the Muslim community to demand the national chairman to return the funds.
“We have some evidence on the matter. For instance, K1.5 million he received from Atupele Muluzi during the last year’s Edi-ul-Fitir celebration was not used on the function as he diverted it into his personal account without telling his executive.
“And millions of kwachas from Kuwait donors intended for various projects haven’t gone into the associations’ account rather the personal account of Sheikh Idrissa Muhammad,” claimed Alison.
He further said that following the revelation of the scam, MAM board of trustees with the influence of Sheikh Muhammad summoned the Deputy Treasurer General, Ali Twanje to a disciplinary committee accusing him of releasing the information to Muslim community.
Alison also alleges that Sheikh Idrissa Muhammad through his chairperson for board of trustees Sheikh Ali Kennedy wrote a letter to suspend the Associations’ Secretary General Dr Sheikh Salmin Omar Idrus due to similar matter.
“This is a character of Sheikh Idrissa Muhammad. He acts against anyone deemed to be his critic. Last year, he fired two MAM top bosses; former Minister of Public Works and Infrastructure Al-Hajj Muhammad Sidik Mia who was vice chairman of board of trustees for the Association and Al-Hajj James Mdala as secretary of the board in order to achieve his hidden agenda of mismanagement of MAM. He is a dictator,” says Alison.
He added that “when MAM’s executive committee summoned Sheikh Idrissa over the matter he hastily apologized for miss appropriating the K1.5 million he received from Muluzi. But he suspended the Secretary General Dr Idrus for allegedly revealing the secrete.”
Another concerned Muslim from eastern region Yelard Kanonyile also accuses the MAM chair of dragging his fellow Muslims to court due heavy criticism on his misconduct of misusing the funds of the association, “instead of resolving the matter internally.”
“He even went further to threaten the deputy treasurer general of MAM Ali Twanje, one of concerned Muslims member, Mussa Chimbende and the Director of Muslim Forum for Human Rights and Democracy Sheikh Al- Hajj Amir Jafali Kawinga that he would sue them after they went public at Quran House, (MAM headquarters) criticizing the chair of misusing the MAMs’ funds and tyrannical leadership style”.
Kanonyile further alleges the MAM chair wrote the State President Peter Mutharika to block the appointment of certain Muslims into government positions.
Last month, Blantyre Fiscal Police summoned Secretary General Dr Salmin Omar Idrus after they received reports about money laundering at the association.
When the Secretary General Dr Idrus appeared before the police as was required, Alison says, Sheikh Idrissa advised the trustees to suspend Sheikh Idrus as SG of the Association as one way of barring him from releasing the information to the police.
“Yes, the association suspended me after the police officers summoned me as Secretary General of MAM over the allegations of money laundering that involved the Association. In fact, in this case am also automatically the suspect and I wonder why the Trustees rushed to suspend me while the fact is that both I and the national chairman are the suspects of the fraud. They should have let the police do their job on the matter. The matter relating to money laundering as serious it is, was supposed to be tabled at executive level of which did not take place”, said Idrus.
He said MAM board of trustees called for the meeting where they agreed to send other officials to the police instead of him as he was suspected of plotting to get the MAM Chairman arrested on money laundering charges.
In an interview with Nyasa Times, MAM national chairman Sheikh Idrissa Muhammad described the allegations as a deliberate ploy to tarnish his image.
“In fact, I am surprised with this issue but I believe that there are some people who are attempting to fabricate such stories in order to tarnish my image that is what I know”, said sheikh Idrissa in a telephone interview from Lusaka in Zambia where he said is processing a Visa.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :