Malawi opposition has welcomed the sacking of embattled Minister of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development, George Chaponda just a day after his house was raided by the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) in the ongoing maizegate corruption investigations.
Chaponda and a privately owned company Transglobe have been implicated in maize procurement scam by presidential commission of inquiry and a special Parliamentary Committee on the maize saga. The commission of inquiry recommended that ACB should investigate the two.
Presidennt Peter Mutharika on Wednesday conceded and took heed of the public outcry and relieved Chaponda of his duties as minister pending the outcome of ACB’s investigations.
On Tuesday the anti-graft body seized cash between US$58,000 and MK127 million that was found stashed in suitcases in the Chaponda’s official house in Lilongwe.
In separate interviews with Nyasa Times opposition political parties welcomed the sacking of Chaponda and called for more shake up within cabinet.
“All along that’s what the opposition, led by Dr. Lazarous Chakwera, has been agitating for. We recommend the President for implementing this idea albeit too late,” said Malawi Congress Party (MCP) spokesperson, Ezekiel Ching’oma.
Ching’oma has since demanded Mutharika to be clear on Chaponda’s dismissal, arguing “As the atmosphere is in the country, at the moment, it is very incomplete and not fair in the face of citizens, just to say Chaponda has been fired without telling the nation as to why it is so.”
Umodzi Party (UP) president John Chisi also commended Mutharika for listening to Malawians’ outcry over Chaponda, saying finally the nation has got what it deserved from its leader.
“When a country is united it gets what it wants. We should thank the President for listening to Malawians. It demonstrates what we all want, a country which is free of corruption and is run on principles of good governance,” said Chisi.
And Consumers Association of Malawi (Cama) executive director and human rights activist, John Kapito noted that Chaponda’s firing was long overdue, adding the corruption allegations have ruined Chaponda’s integrity.
Kapito, whose organization was first to fault Chaponda on maizegate saga, said: “Honorable Chaponda should have resigned or fired long time ago and we wondered why Chaponda was still maintained as a cabinet minister for this long however his overstay has ruined his credibility and integrity as a person that can be trusted.”Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :