Malawi government has opened the investigations into a passport syndicate where a box of 250 blank Malawian passport books got lost in December last year.
Outspoken Mzimba West member of parliament Harry Mkandawire (People’s Party –PP) exposed the ‘passportgate’ in the National Assembly.
Principal Secretary in the Ministry of Home Adffairs and Internal Security, Sam Madula has disclosed that a team of investigators, who include police officers from fiscal department and Immigration officer, has been dispatched to South Africa and would probe the circumstances for seven days.
Madula said the investigators will be interested to question a Nigerian who posed as a Malawians from Mangochi with passport number MW853507 from the missing passport books.
“The Nigerian used the name Vincent Banda from Mangochi, meaning that 249 passports are still out there. Banda was arrested in South Africa en-route to UK, he was smuggling some goods,” Mkandawire told Parliament.
Madula said Malawi government informed South African government about the intended interrogation of the Nigerian.
He said Lilongwe and Pretoria have agreed to quiz the Nigerian.
“But we are also carrying out pther investigations,” said Madula.
He said government will get to logical conclusion of the investigations.
According to MP Mkandawire, on December 29 2016, the Department of Immigration received a consignment of passports from Technobrain, the supplier of the books, whose quantity was short with one box containing 250 blank passports.
Mkandawire told parliament that Chief Immigration officer Masauko Medi signed for the consignment even though one box was missing as earlier the stores officer refused to sign for the same consignment.
“The Chief Immigration Officer signed for these passports. The crime is starting from that juncture,” said Mkandawire.
Peoples Party ( PP) legislator Ralph Jooma from Mangochi Monkey Bay called for Chief Immigration officer Medi to be investigated as he signed for the consignment with missing passport books.
Mkandawire proposed that the parliamentary committee on Defence and Security -which he chairs – should be manadated to investigate the matter, saying government cannot be trusted because it seems to be “party to the racket.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :