Office of the Director of Public Officers Declarations will on December 14th commence physical verification exercise of initial declarations submitted by public officers.
Briefing the media in Lilongwe on Thursday Director of Asset Declarations Christopher Tukula said the physical verification methodology involves comparing the data in the forms with data in various public agencies and private entities to check authenticity, veracity and accuracy.
Tukula said the exercise will involve visiting sites for inspection and assessment of declared movable and immovable properties and wherever necessary professional experts will be used in the process at the expense of the Directorate.
Institutions that declared their assets include Ministry of Lands and Housing, Local Government Council registries, Malawi Housing Corporation, Directorate of Road Traffic and Safety Services, Financial Institutions, Malawi Revenue Authority, among others.
Tukula revealed that 10,200 listed public officers who were serving in various positions when the Act became effective on 1st July, 2014 submitted their initial declaration between 1st October and 31st December, 2014.
“The 10,200 listed public officers are the ones whose declared assets will undergo the verification exercise to prove if indeed what they filled on the forms was truthful,” he explained.
He said that the initial declaration will be followed by an annual declaration update that will be filed bwithin thirty days after the commencement of each fiscal year.
He added: “Each listed member is required to submit a duly completed, signed and commissioned annual declaration form as an update return to the Initial Declaration which was already submitted, the annual declaration form shall be submitted directly to the director.”
Tukula revealed that from December 7th the public access platform which was initially operational for officers in the political and elected officer’s category only will be open to the public for all categories of listed officers.
Public access to declarations is a legally sanctioned and internationally recognized practice which is widely accepted as a reasonable, necessary and justifiable public interest derogation of private interests in modern democratic governance.