Ministers ‘innocent’ in housing scam – ACB boss

Malawi’s Foreign Affairs Minister Peter Mutharika and other senior government officials involved in the Malawi Housing Corporation (MHC) K105 million house scam are “innocent” and have no case to answer, Anti Corruption Bureau (ACB) director Alex Nampota has declared.

The scam was exposed by the Daily Times and the publication graphically presented facts and figures which indicated that government top ministers including Mutharika, former Attorney General Dr. Jane Ansah and the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Regional Governor for the South, Noel Masangwi were beneficiaries in the shocking scandal.

ACB has since arrested MHC former General Manager Golden Matiya and MHC Deputy General Manager Floyd Mondiwa. They have been inducted on corruption charges but released on bail.

Nampota: No case to answer for Peter Mutharika and other purchasers

During the interview with Brian Banda on Straight Talk programme aired on Capital FM Tuesday evening, Nampota was asked if the MHC officials were not used as “sacrificial lambs” leaving out “big fishes” like the cabinet ministers and party officials.

The ACB boss said clearly that the cabinet ministers and all who purchased the MHC houses at cheap prices were “innocent.”

“Ministers were innocent,” said Nampota. “The rest of them were all innocent purchasers.”

“All these purchasers you can’t fault them,” he stressed.

He however said the two MHC officials were the main culprits in the scam.

“We want to get down to the ground to establish what has been going on,” he said.

Nampota said the MHC officials flouted the parastatal’s Corruption Prevention Policy.

“Operatives within MHC have to follow rules and procedures. We discovered that they had flouted some rules,” he said.

“We go investigate and established exactly what it is. So we have established the actual position on the ground and we have arrested two officials at Malawi Housing Corporation. Our investigation came to an end. They flouted corrupt practices act themselves,” said Nampota during the interview.

The ACB boss said the bureau operates “independently “ and that it cannot fail to probe a cabinet minister, citing an overused example that it investigated former minister Yusuf Mwawa and successfully prosecuted him.

“Being a minister is not a status that would make you away from investigations,” he said.

Nampota said ACB is still investigating Energy Minister Goodall Gondwe in relation to the manner in which procurement of 2005/06 subsidised fertiliser was conducted when he was Finance Minister.

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