In a show of impunity largely associated with the ousted Democratic Progressive party (DPP) government, beleaguered National Food Reserve Agency (NFRA) deputy chief executive officer Gerald Viola has reported for duties despite a board resolution to sack him.
The scandal riddled Viola is on bail after being arrested last week for offering a government vehicle as collateral for usury.
Viola had not been reporting for work for two months from April to June as he was in the lower shire openly campaigning for ousted former president Peter Mutharika in the June 23 fresh presidential elections but was getting his full benefits.
Now in a show of impunity, Viola is back at the office and is bragging to close workmates that he cannot be ‘touched’.
“The sad thing is that he is even boasting to friends that he cannot be touched by anyone and he will claim ‘millions of kwachas’ if government dares to remove him,” said one NFRA employee who refused to be named.
Insiders said former Chief Secretary to the Government Lloyd Muhara ‘sat’ on a report from the NFRA disciplinary board which recommended for the summary dismissal of Viola for abuse of office and fraud after he single handedly gave out a contract to supply maize worth K3.3 billion through a Local Purchase Order (L.P.O).
A member of the now dissolved NFRA board said they recommended to Statutory Corporations to fire Viola after conducting investigations including a disciplinary hearing over the matter.
Viola referred Nyasa Times reporter to NFRA Head of Human Resources and Administration Mc Donald Makonde who said he does not see anything wrong with Viola reporting for duties at NFRA.
“What is wrong with him reporting for duties. We have not received any information which indicates that he is not an employee of NFRA. So yes he is enjoying his benefits and there is nothing wrong with Mr Viola,” said Makonde.
Asked about the two month absence where Viola was campaigning for Mutharika and yet continued to enjoy his benefits, Makonde said Viola took a holiday and ‘we do not follow what people do on holidays.
Makonde however confirmed that Viola was summoned to a disciplinary hearing over the K3.3 billion maize contract but was not aware of the outcome of the hearing.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :