Malawi Police in Dedza have arrested a number of people including traditional leaders whilst 17 of them under chief Kaphuka are under probe over a K2.6 million cash transfer scam.
Chief Kaphuka has since warned he would fire the 17 village headmen involved in the scam.
United Purpose, formerly Concern Universal official Joseph Mphipira said his organisation earmarked the K2.6 million to be distributed to the poorest hit by drought.
“Instead of putting the poor as beneficiaries, the chiefs put friends and relatives as beneficiaries and shared the money. Worse still, they demanded money from the beneficiaries,” he said.
He said out of the K2.6 million distributed, K1.2 million has since been recovered from the bogus beneficiaries.
Mphipira said his office is working with the police to recover all the money from dubious beneficiaries. He doubted the program would continue following this mess by traditional leaders and those in area development committees.
Chief Kaphuka said it was sad his traditional leaders were involved in the scam.
“Any traditional leader, convicted in the scam, would be fired, there is no choice about this,” he said. Dedza is also on spotlight following revelations that the district council dubiously engaged unskilled contractors to construct two bridges and a school block which all collapsed before they were used. One of the contractors blamed this on witchcraft.