Malga echoes concerns over K6.2bn Covid funds audit report: Delay affecting local councils

The Malawi Local Government Association (Malga) has joined many other quarters in condemning “central government’s action to delay the release” of an audit report into the alleged abuse of K6.2 billion meant to finance various interventions in the national response against the Coronavirus disease (Covid-19) pandemic.

Zeru Mkandawire: “report findings have significant bearing on the image of local governments and their operations”

Malga–an umbrella body of all local governments in Malawi–has since called for an “immediate release” of the findings of the audit, saying “they have significant bearing on the image of local governments and their operations”.

The association’s sentiments come considering that district commissioners and chief executive officers of 34 local councils are some of the public servants that were interdicted in order to pave the way for “a smooth conduct” of the audit.

In an interview with Nyasa Times, Malga acting executive director, Hadrod Zeru Mkandawire, said the association is “deeply concerned and surprised by the action taken by the central government to delay” the release of the report.

“The audit report contains findings that directly affect local government authorities that are our members. It should be noted that since the controlling officers of local governments were interdicted on 21st February 2021, 34 out of 35 local governments are operating without substantive controlling officers or official acting controlling officers which is not a conducive environment for smooth operations and substantive decision making at the councils secretariat level,” said Mkandawire.

He added that the controlling officers, who are currently on suspension, continue to be in suspense as regards to their fate and future.

“This is not only a physiological tortute but also constitute unfair labour practice. Therefore, unnecessary further delays in releasing the report are unacceptable.

“We wonder what is the motive or intention of the central government by hiding such a public document whose findings the entire nation is eagerly waiting for. We hope someone is not trying to cook findings to suit the convenience of some actors at the centre,” further said Mkandawire.

Widespread allegations of abuse of the K6.2 billion had prompted President Lazarus Chakwera to order the office of the Auditor General to investigate how the funds were used by various clusters in the Covid-19 national response.

The allegations, that exposed lack of adherence to strict financial management controls, also prompted Chakwera to direct the Secretary to the President and Cabinet to interdict all controlling officers who did not submit their expenditure reports.

The 30-days period the president gave for the audit to take place and its results released–already elapsed many days ago, sparking anger among some quarters including Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC), governance experts, social commentators and concerned citizens.

In media reports published or aired on Sunday, Minister of Information, Gospel Kazako, revealed that the said report is now with the Secretary to the Treasury after the Auditor General submitted it for “action”.

Kazako reportedly said: “The report was finalised and the Auditor General submitted the final [copy] to the Secretary to the Treasury who requested for the audit. Malawians can thus be assured that the findings will be made available for them to appreciate the magnitude of the usage of K6.2 billion Covid-19 funds.”

The Sunday media reports also quoted HRDC chairperson Gift Trapence as having said that the coalition has given the government 21 days to release the audit report.

“It is true we are giving the government 21 days to release the audit report as regards to the K6.2 billion. If the government will not comply, HRDC will have no choice but just to mobilise Malawians and go into the streets. We will just announce the date of the demonstrations after the 21 days,” Trapence reportedly said.

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Jah
Jah
1 month ago

instead of realising ma report busy kupeleka mauthenga a maliro. Paja ma pastor nde ntchito imene amadziwa

Jah
Jah
1 month ago

kunena zoona president uyu wayamba kubowa mweee

Mapwisi
1 month ago

And 17 billion kwacha released from Treasury by Chakwera for covid-19 operations must also be accounted for. No two ways about it. Why should we worry much about 6.2bn kwacha and remain silent on how 17bn kwacha was used??? Pastor Chakwera must come clean on this one. Report akuchedwetsa dala kutulutsa because the executive ate the biggest portion of the covid money. Gule alipoooo!!!! Chakwera ali mubwalo

FEW GOOD MEN
FEW GOOD MEN
1 month ago

Rumours are that Timothy mtambo is involved, thats why the silence

MCP Diehard
MCP Diehard
1 month ago

While this 6.2B is a bogeyman created by overzealous and mostly bitter sour grapes; The Tonse administration really needs to deliver promises on time. You can’t keep missing self-determined deadlines for crying out loud. Why and How? Creating unnecessary noise and a bad perception. Yes yes, we know you don’t want to be rushed by the lhomwe cabal and friends, but then again, nobody is forcing you to make these commitments. You are voluntarily opting for them, so follow up! This is a relatively trivial matter to keep prolonging unless there is a bombshell in the report; in which case,… Read more »

lester
lester
1 month ago
Reply to  MCP Diehard

Well. The report is ready and the joke is on you.

MCP Diehard
MCP Diehard
1 month ago
Reply to  lester

How is the Joke on me when the report was released late?
It’s a perception thing, Lester. The issue here is about missing multiple self-imposed deadlines.

Contents of this report are trivial and useless.

M'memo wagulu lathu Tonse alliance mwathira mcheng
M'memo wagulu lathu Tonse alliance mwathira mcheng
1 month ago
Reply to  MCP Diehard

For those of us who are regular visitors here, it is quite surprising that MCP Diehard here stings it’s clan, this person has been a fanatic all along, but we understand that a person reaches that end,…that end. Munthu umafikadi potopa, MCP Diehard wafika potopa. This is incidentally at a time when Daud Suleman himself says ‘prospering together koma anthu ena akukwera anthu ena ayi’, obviously Daud Suleman wants a full ministerial position not deputy, he will only answer to Chakwera, anamva kuwawa biggy athu Suleman. Anatero ndithu kudandaula tikumwa kwa Biwi, tinakamugulira gin, after Chibuku chozizira chitasowa. Bigman wathu… Read more »

Anzelu ndi Anzelu
Anzelu ndi Anzelu
1 month ago

Kodi akunisa chani?

Chokwadu
Chokwadu
1 month ago

No report will come because those who chewed the money are close to the president. Phuka was removed yet Chiponda still remains the minister. This woman is a certified thief. She stole all the money meant for the cancelled independence celebrations and her boss allied to us that he will give a report but no report up to now because they shared the money and also Gedion Kalumbu and Chris Kapondamgaga have been stealing money using cross roads hotel and their boss promised to give a report and no report up to now.

naneo
naneo
1 month ago

do you think 21 days itha asanatulutse report limeneri? masiku achuluka awa HRDC yamtundu wanji iyi ?ikanakhala DPP mukanayipatsa 3days go to hell HRDC

Joni
Joni
1 month ago
Reply to  naneo

Ndiye mukufuna mufananitse ndi DPP kkkkk sitinafike pa inu paja…timapereka dosage mofanana ndi matenda ake….munakakhala inu bwenzi mukubweza moto apa ndi Mchacha…koma anzanu ali kaye phee pano zomwe zikuwonetsa kuti akuyesetsa…..unakupweteketsani ndi mwano wanu uja kkkkk awa tiwamachabe koma osati muja tinakuchitirani inu muja ayi ….awa tipanga mwanzeru chifukwa tikudziwa kuti makadeti afuna alowelerepo ndiye chitetedzo chake chidzabvuta HEVE!!!!

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