Malawi Congress Party (MCP) councillor of Bembeke ward in Dedza, Davie Lingalawe has been fined by the Dedza First Grade Magistrates Court after being found guilty of tampering with Electricity Supply Corporation of Malawi (Escom) equipment.
Lingalawe, 58, was arrested together with electrician Shanday Callisto, 29, last week after Dedza police received a complaint from Escom investigator that some people in the district tampered with the corporation’s metres to prevent them from measuring actual value of electricity supply to their properties.
The two were charged with interference with supplies of electricity contrary to Section 40(2)(b) of Energy Regulation Act of 2004.
Assistant Superintendent Patrick Chambuluka said Escom officials discovered that Lingalawe had tampered with the meter box on the pole that supplies electricity to his bottle store which is known at the Boma as Zabwino bottle store.
In mitigation, Lingalawe apologized for his conduct. Magistrate Ennete Banda said it was a disgrace for an elected councillor who should be upholding the constitution to break the same laws.
The court slapped Callisto with a five year jail term with no option of fine while Lingalawe was ordered to pay a fine of K100, 000 or spend 18 months in jail.
The councillor paid the fine and walked free.
Lingalawe hails from Chigwammowa village, T/A Chakhumbila in Ntcheu district while Callisto comes from Senzani village, T/A Phambala in Ntcheu.