Malawi government Chief Secretary George Mkondiwa on Thursday morning contradicted former maid to lawyer Ralph Kasambara, Jessie Mussa, during his testimony in court in the ongoing attempted murder case of former Budget Director Paul Mphwiyo.
The former housemaid was also on record in her last year testimony that she saw on 13th September 2013 the man who was later revealed to her as Paul Mphwiyo arriving at Kasambara’s house with a bag which contained huge sums of money.
Kafuwe further said Zizwa [Kasambara’s son] was with her on the day at Lilongwe Golf Club.
During cross examination from Kumwembe, Mkondiwa laughed off the possibility of Kasambara meeting Mphwiyo at his house.
Kumwembe: Do you remember on 13 September Malawi received visitors?
Mkondiwa: yes, former presidents Thabo Mbeki and Fredrick Chisano
Kumwembe: What was the purpose of their visit?
Mkondiwa: There discussions over the lake dispute with Tanzania
Kumwembe: Where was the meeting held?
Mkondiwa: It was held on 13 September at Kamuzu Palace
Kumwembe: Which ministers attended?
Mkondiwa: Foreign Affairs Minister Mganda Chiume and Minister of Justice Ralph Kasambara
Kumwembe: After the meeting where did you go?
Mkondiwa: We went to Salina, including the ministers
Kumwembe: What time did you left Salima?
Mkondiwa: I don’t remember because we had late lunch but it should be after 3pm.
Kasambara then came in with a line of completely discrediting his former maid’s testimony.
Kasambara: Do you remember having my kid in Salima?
Kasambara: Middle aged or young
Mkondiwa: Young, should be about 9 years
Kasambara: If someone says the kid was with her on the same day at Golf Club, what could you say?
Mkondiwa: (laughing) it depends how many little kids you have but with this one it can’t be.
Kasambara: If someone says around 3pm on the same day I was home with Mphwiyo drinking juice what could you say?
Mkondiwa: I would be surprised
After Mkondiwa, Reserve Bank of Malawi Director for the Banking and currency management department Mercy Kumbatira told the court about the discussions between RBM, Accountants General, Treasury and Economic Affairs Directorate over the expenditure increase in government.
“On September 9, 2013, government called for a meeting with RBM to discuss domestic borrowing figures because of the significant increase in domestic borrowing reflected in the Domestic Borrowing (DOMBO) table.
“During the meeting government wanted to understand what had triggered the increase in domestic borrowing. RBM explained that from analysis, there were some huge payments that had been made in respect of military spending and payment of arrears,” she said.
In her statement, at the meeting Mphwiyo however, explained that they were aware of the high spending on account of military expenditure and payment of arrears but maintained that domestic borrowing was still too high even after taking these into account.
“The meeting noted that the resultant high domestic borrowing was therefore evidence That government through the Accountants Generals office had been issuing cheques despite Treasury’s assertion that government had curtailed expenditure with the objective of meeting IMF targets,” she said
She said the meeting resolved that AG office should immediately conduct reconciliation and RBM should provide cheque transactions details to facilitate the process with a later meeting to be held on September 13.
At the meeting, AG office did not provide reconciliation results as requested as they had not concluded the exercise.
The case has since been adjourned to January 27 to 29 with Pika Manondo defending himself and cashgate prisoner Oswald Lutepo testifying together with politician Brown Mpinganjira among others.
Mphwiyo was shot outside his Area 43 residence in Lilongwe on September 13 2013.
The incident is widely believed to have exposed the plunder of public resources at Capital Hill that came to be known as Cashgate.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :