PTA Bank officials to be subpoenaed to Malawi maizegate inquiry: Chidanti says ‘we will dig deeper’

The joint inquiry by Parliamentary Committee on Agriculture, Irrigation and Food Security with Public Accounts Committee into the procurement process of maize from neighbouring Zambia intends to subpoena PTA Bank officials to explain on the money remittance related to the issue.

Malawi government obtained a loan of K26 billion ( $34.5 million) from the Eastern and Southern African Development Bank (PTA Bank) to purchase 100, 000 metric tonnes of maize from government of Zambia through ZCF. Consequently, the maize price was hiked from around K5000 to K12 500 per 50 kg bag to enable Admarc repay the loan.

MP Chidanti Malunga: We will dig deeper

The government disputes that money was paid to Zambia private company Kaloswe Commuter and Courier Ltd or  Zambia Cooperative Federation (ZFC), a government agency.

But during the start of the inquiry session on Tuesday it was learnt that details of payment have been reported in Zambian media.

Chairperson of Parliamentary Committee on Agriculture, Irrigation and Food Security Joseph Chidanti-Malunga said they will investigate from the PTA Bank on the cash transactions.

“As we go along, we will be probing the evidence of the Letter of Credit that have been issued, if any,” said Malunga during the session which was covered live on private Zodiak radio.

“We intend to invite representatives of PTA Bank in Malawi so that they can provide their side of the story and see whether money really exchanged hands of whether money was wired to Zambia,” said Malunga.

He said more information “will be coming out as we get deeper into the investigations.”

The maize purchase deal is currently marred with controversy regarding contractual issues involving the State-produce trader Agricultural Development and Marketing Corporation (Admarc).

While Admarc insists that it is buying the staple grain from Zambia Cooperative Federation (ZCF), a government agency, documents show that Admarc used a middleman Kaloswe.

Meanwhile, Zambia’s Minister of Agriculture Dora Siliya has said that the Zambian government has nothing to do with the maizegate as the Malawian government did not buy maize from the Food Reserve Agency (FRA) but from individual farmers.

Siliya said the only role the Zambian government played was to issue a permit of clearance, while the Malawian government came and identified a private agent to procure the maize on its behalf.

“We allowed for the export to Malawi because the contract was signed before the ban on exports was effected.

“The contract was signed in June 2016 under a government-government arrangement to help Malawi with the commodity following a drought which only spared Zambia in the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC),” said Siliya in quoted  in a report by Zambian Observer.

“The Malawian government identified an agent, the maize suppliers and also negotiated the terms without any input from the Government,” she said.

She said after the Malawian government sought Zambia’s assistance; the Government provided them with a permit to import maize while the maize export ban was still in effect.

Office of the Director of Public Procurement (ODPP) in Malawi said they approved a request from Admarc to procure 100 000 metric tonnes of non-genetically modified maize from Zambia at $345 per tonne.

ODDP director Paul Taulo said Admarc first submitted a request to buy maize from Kaloswe Commuter and Courier Ltd and after its approval, the corporation changed, opting to buy from Zambia Cooperative Federation (ZFC) at the same price of $345 per tonne.

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Mika Kumbire
Mika Kumbire
7 years ago

Malawians let us not be fooled. These investigations are simply allowance and money making machines for the commissioners and investigators. This issue ahs legs to stand on in Zambia since Dr. Saviour Chishimba just raised the issue to divert attention from the corrupt practices in his own briefcase Party.

Chidanti and group just want to raise sitting allowances and may be travel allowances to Zambia and other destinations. Watch this space, it’s always eating time in Malawi.

7 years ago

Chaponda waponda chaponda ndi chiphazi chake cha-ponda kkkkkkkkkkkk!!!!!!

7 years ago

The boxing ring with 12 rounds, so far Chidanti 5 and Chaponda 2. Let’s see how this bout will end. So far we are in the sixth round.

Chokuba Mondokwa
Chokuba Mondokwa
7 years ago

We want all corrupt issues to be investigated as expeditiusly as possible osati za mondokwa zokhazi

charlie hebdo
charlie hebdo
7 years ago

Ok…now the story Is unfolding before our eyes. Admarc first entered into a contract with Kaloswe to buy maize at $345 when ZFC were actually offering it cheaper. The buyer wanted a proforma that showed the higher value of the maize but eventually bought it frm ZFC for cheaper enabling the buyer to pocket the difference. But now Kaloswe is suing both Admarc, ZFC and a Zambia cabinet minister for breach of contract.

7 years ago

chidanti also stole 6 computers from Bunda when he was a lecturer and was arrested by Police.You were rescued by this student … otherwise you would have been serving.A very cruel lecturer my colleagues would agree…

7 years ago
Reply to  Thenge

cadet wachabechabe iwe

7 years ago

Hahaha kma zinazi…

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