Not all ‘Amwenyes’ are corrupt: Some are honest, hardworking Malawians

Debates dominating public spaces recently haven’t been rosy for Malawians of Asian origin.


India High Commissioner to Malawi Shri Anurag Bhushan
Wirth President Dr. Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera

If you sniff around—both in mainstream and social media; there appears to be a tacit understanding, or call it an agreement, that Malawians of Asian origin, commonly called ‘Amwenye’, are the country’s biggest players in the game of looting public resources.

It is becoming apparent that many are, slowly but steadily, getting convinced that ‘Amwenye’, who are mostly well-to-do, makes their fortune through defrauding Malawians.

Well, but before we finish casting these stones, we need, of course, to take a pause and handle some reflections.

Yes, it would be foolhardy to deny the role Amwenye have beautifully played, over the years, in collaborating with government officials in defrauding Malawians through corrupt activities.

Evidently, some of the worst corrupt scandals in the country, yes those involving big millions, have always had a face of some Amwenye somewhere.

Equally disturbing is that despite being evident that some Amwenye was a key player in some shady corrupt deal, there cases hardly hits the mark; always vanishing somewhere in the dark unknown.

These facts have had a disturbing effect on the psyche of justice-loving Malawians. It is becoming evidently clear that Amwenye are becoming a protected emblem in the country; that can loot our public coffers and still go scot-free. Only the poor goes to prison.

However, despite these hard facts; we also need to accept that not all Amwenye are in this league of defrauders.

We have several Amwenye such as Hitesh Anadkat, the chairperson for First Capital Bank in Malawi.

He has created employment for thousands in the country and, also, been a key player in humanitarian works.

In January this year, Anadkat handed over a K350 million cell-block to Chichiri Prison in Blantyre. He was moved to construct this 384-bed block, we are told, after noting poor conditions prisoners live in.

There are the Kanabar’s and the Dossani Trust which have been involved oin many charitable works.  There are many who are involved in charity but they prefer not to publicise.

And some companies offering employment to many Malawians are run by Asian business community such as  Rab Processors, Bakhrea, Pharmanova, Mapeto, Manobec, Kukoma, Globe internet, Shayona Cement, LMD Group Mount Meru and Petroda.

Such kinds of Amwenye are a blessing to this great nation and they should never be soiled together in the dirt of the few ones.

That is why in condemning the bad apples among the Amwenye community, let’s resist the rot of generalizing.  Not all Amwenye are rotten.

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Masharubu
Masharubu
25 days ago

I couldn’t help but burst out laughing when I reached that part of the article which lists the likes of Mapeto (DWSM), Kukoma and Manobec as being amongst the few Amwenye business concerns which are being painted in positive light. If that is, indeed, the view of the article’s author, why didn’t he also include the businesses operated by Batatawala, Choonara and Zameer Kareem amongst those above board and corruption free Amwenye businesses? Can we please get serious for once? Do Malawians really appreciate the full extent of the devastating effects the corruption being perpetrated by these Amwenyes has had… Read more »

John Banda
26 days ago

When did Malawi become a racist country. Koma weren’t we the warm heart of Africa? I like the example of Anadkat. Aside from the prison building, he has built a building at college of medicine, the trauma centre at QECH, even a building at bt Adventist. He was chair of the national cancer association some years back if not mistaken. He built FCB from scratch to being in 6 countries and kodi if I’m not mistaken it is the biggest company to come from Malawi. Employs thousands of people and made many Malawians rich with the stock exchange listing. He… Read more »

Isaac Mbewe
Isaac Mbewe
26 days ago

Mocambique, Zambia, Zimbabwe and South Africa our neighbours love their countries as the govts put up strict laws for foreigners who work or do business in their countries. Wake up Mr Veep, include these issues in your reforms to make a better Malawi

JACK OBAMA
JACK OBAMA
26 days ago

Amwenye ndi anthu oyipa kwambiri. These people are evil worse than our colonial masters. They have a policy which they say “make them work hard pay them less and make them poor so that they control us.” I tell you if most companies we have today were owned by azungu from UK or America would have been so good. Look at working conditions are in Indian companies or Asians. I pray that in Malawi we should have a rise of another Idi Amin like our friends in Uganda. Yes Amin was somehow wrong but helped to clean out the Amwenyes… Read more »

Ku lumbadzi
Ku lumbadzi
26 days ago
Reply to  JACK OBAMA

I would just like to remind you that your favorite politician one Idi Amin,not only did he slaughter thousands of his own people,he destroyed the whole country.amogst the thousands of indians who were deported in the 1970’s were 20 different Patel families ( not related) who were millionaires in uk pounds,arrived in Uk, penniless ,destitute,but twenty years later,the same 20 families through hardwork and business flair became millionaires again ,beat that,not only that ,president museveni asked the Indians back,some returned,others sent their relatives from India,properties and farms were given back ,now population round about 15000/20000(80000 in 1970’s)they contribute 62% of… Read more »

Ku lumbadzi
Ku lumbadzi
26 days ago
Reply to  JACK OBAMA

Correction,osanga lubwalubwa,

Benjones
Benjones
26 days ago

Very rossy article. The companies mentioned most of them have very bad record and are some of the beneficiaries of the corruption and cash gate. Sorry but we can not but this. Maybe the poor Asian can be a good person. But all are untrustable.

Ku lumbadzi
Ku lumbadzi
26 days ago
Reply to  Benjones

Amongst the companies,there are about four,how they got on that list,beyond belief,those are the ones who have been heavily involved in corrupt practices with Malawi governments from time immemorial.but to belittle all is unfair,majority of them do not do business with government,they are focused,hardworking,consistent,business acumen,testament to their longevity through out the globe.albinos and elderly people get killed in Malawi,but that doesn’t make all Malawians likewise,same ma amwenye awa,no lesser person than,President Chakwera said that it’s only a few business are involved with the help of public officials.so don’t paint everybody with the same paintbrush.separate facts from fiction.

Sidos
Sidos
26 days ago

All Mwenyes are corrupt. Lock them up. Send them back to.. India? Is the President a Mwenye? Is the Minister of Finance a Mwenye? Are there any Directors of Procurement, Human Resources or PSs who are Mwenye? Is there any official at MRA who is Mwenye? Are there any staff at Admarc or the boards of Escom who are Mwenye? Is there any police who is Mwenye? One wonders how corruption takes place. Scapegoating is certainly convenient. In South Africa it is Malawians and Zimbabweans. In USA it is Mexicans and Blacks. Everywhere the politicians are making money. They certainly… Read more »

guest
guest
26 days ago
Reply to  Sidos

You sound like a disgruntled mwenye yourself. yes go back to india….by the way, why dont you amwenyes vote when the rest of us vote? you are too corrupt indeed, you defraud the goverment thru underdeclaring tax and the like….just go back to India or Pakstan

Ku lumbadzi
Ku lumbadzi
26 days ago
Reply to  guest

Get a life .

Ku lumbadzi
Ku lumbadzi
26 days ago
Reply to  guest

Two million registered Malawians did not vote, in the 2020 general elections.though I personally feel those eligible should vote.

Ku lumbadzi
Ku lumbadzi
26 days ago
Reply to  guest

Maybe it’s their constitutional right to vote or not.

Sidos
Sidos
24 days ago
Reply to  guest

I am a Malawian who wants our beautiful country and people to develop and be successful. Unfortunately, I don’t think that can happen with scapegoating Amwenye, Chinese, Rwandans, Nigerians or anyone else. It’s possible if we all work together to reduce corruption and not blindly follow any political party or ideology. As for under-declaring taxes or any other form of corruption; these things don’t work by race. As many people have repeatedly pointed out, take the like of Leston Mulli and billions in unpaid loans to government, George Chaponda and Maize-gate, Tom Mpanganjira and bribing judges.. the list can go… Read more »

Last edited 24 days ago by Sidos
Imran patel
Imran patel
20 days ago
Reply to  guest

Some of the so called mwenyes came in the 1920’s well before your forefathers fled the war in northern Mozambique and decided to settle in Malawi. Some migrated to malawi from DRC TANZANIA ZAMBIA SOUTH AFRICA so if any one should go back it should be you to northern Mozambique where your forefathers came from.

Keen Observer
Keen Observer
26 days ago

So Mr Mike Fiko does it mean that when one is doing charitable works is NOT corrupt????? If one corruptly is defrauding Malawians on the other hand then employ some Malawians on the other hand then he is a blessing????? My school of thinking begs me to differ on that one. 99.9% of Amwenye, it is in their DNA wherever you go you will find out that they always try to do shortcuts. In some countries probably they simply fail cos the systems are tight BUT Mmwenye ndi Mmwenye sindinamuwonepo wabwino ine. Ngati sakuchita thanks ndiye kuti corruption or ill-treatment… Read more »

Ku lumbadzi
Ku lumbadzi
26 days ago
Reply to  Keen Observer

Charitable with rotten gains,it’s just as good as sining twice,but where I disagree,is wherever they go to,not that they are superior,but they are progressive,in USA migrants have come from all over the world,but the ones from sub continent (India, Pakistan,Bangladesh)like them or not ,in the last two or three decades have made the most economic progress,in fact right now they are the most influential amongst the minorities.(pop 3.5 million)

Ku lumbadzi
Ku lumbadzi
26 days ago
Reply to  Keen Observer

Correction,most influential of all the minorities.

Isaac Mbewe
Isaac Mbewe
26 days ago

I mean high unemployment rate

Isaac Mbewe
Isaac Mbewe
26 days ago

Yes you are very that not all are bad and corrupt but a good number of them are racist. You have never worked in a company owned by these mwenyes. They are the ones contributing to high employment rate in Malawi because the owners call their fellow mwenyes from India and Pakistan to work as exparitaes yet they dont have any expertise. A Malawian will teach them the work but pay him 10 times more than the black employee. Go to all the companys you have mentioned and interview the locals, that is when you will know that Malawians are… Read more »

Ku lumbadzi
Ku lumbadzi
26 days ago
Reply to  Isaac Mbewe

A doomed nation under Dpp,Tonse Alliance early days.

Joshua
Joshua
26 days ago

Tell that to the President and Hon. Chilima that they should never get near to these guptas. Amalowa pang’Ono-pang’Ono. A good Indian is a dead one.

Ku lumbadzi
Ku lumbadzi
26 days ago
Reply to  Joshua

Can you come with something more original?

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