Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC) has hit again, this time exposing multi-million corrupt activities at state-run Lilongwe Handling Company (LIHACO).
Through its whistle-blower initiative, HRDC says it has received allegations of arbitrary award of several contracts at LIHACO in disregard of public procurement laws and regulations.
In its letter dated 6th November 2020 to Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) boss Reyneck Matemba, HRDC chairperson alleges that the CEO, Mr. Alick Kasaila, single handedly, without even advertising, identified a driller/contractor to drill a borehole at LIHACO’s head office at MK17.5 million.
“It is further alleged that the same contractor also drilled a similar borehole at the CEO’s personal house. LIHACO’s Head Office is on rented premises,” said Trapence.
Trapence added that it is also alleged that the borehole was drilled without discussion with the landlord.
“It is also alleged that LIHACO awarded a MK37 million contract for the supply of staff uniforms to the Board Chairperson’s company. It is alleged that the Chairperson Company then supplied substandard uniforms and was eventually paid MK205 million for this contract. It is further alleged that this contract was not advertised and that the Chairperson’s company was not on the list of prequalified suppliers,” he said.
Shockingly, reports indicate that Board Chairperson and the CEO procured iPads worth MK8 million without following procurement procedures.
“It is further alleged that the CEO awarded a MK640 million Ground Service Equipment contract to his personal friend, without following procurement laws and guidelines,” he said.
“It is further alleged that the same friend was awarded a contract to renovate LIHACO head office. It is alleged that this contract too was not advertised. It is further alleged that despite being paid huge sums of money, the contractor has not completed the renovations to date.
“It is further alleged that the CEO awarded a legal services contract to a legal firm belonging to his friend without advertising. The contract is worth MK1.6 million per month. It is further alleged that this contract is open ended. We appeal to ACB to investigate these allegations.”