01:27 am - Wednesday 21 November 2018

Malawi’s economic mess will only be resolved after change of government- Malawians have lost confidence in Joyce Banda and so have the Donors

By Analytical Rose - Thu Nov 14, 9:21 am

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Malawi: I have just been to Malawi, my beloved home country and I can’t help but comment on the ongoing economic saga there. Of course the country is wrapped up in what is termed Cash-gate. This being the name Malawians have coined for the looting of Government funds that has taken place over the last few years.A lot of arrests seem to have materialized; when I was there the arrests were those of relatively junior people. Immediately this left me with question why? these juniors cannot gain access to such large sums of money unless someone in a higher position has facilitated the transfers. The question is why are the higher hierachy being saved? As the whole scandal progresses, police seem to be making in roads into bigger names like Kasambara The ex Chief Justice of Malawi, Lutepo who is another PP official. I felt slightly cheated with these arrests though. Let;s take the case of Kasambara, a long period of time passed between searching his house and and the Cash-gate scandal coming out. I feel this was enough time for a man who is wise in legal matters to modify any evidence which might be available. So is that just because of Malawi Police are being inefficient or is there in fact a deliberate attempt to give the culprit chance to exonorate himself? I take solace in the fact that actually whatever you do the truth usually comes out. So I hope God will be fair with Malawians here.

Cash gate winners

Cash gate winners

Lutepo, he is said to be a business man; apparently he was abroad attending to business chores and eventually handed himself in at the Songwe border of Malawi. I find all this almost insultingly vacant. If Lutepo was on the interpol list as was stated, how come those that checked with a few countries did not find his name on the list of those wanted by Interpol.? Are we being lied to again? How can he be on Interpol and manage to travel all through these countries only to hand self in at Malawi border? Interpol ladies and gentlemen is extremely efficient! The JB administration is taking us for granted!I also gathered that the presidential jet was sold to this man at a give away price, I don’t know any more details but if this is true, how has Malawi benefited from this other than this very close ally of Joyce Bandas gaining a bargain!!! I never thought much of Joyce Banda’s austerity measures anyway, but again this is treating the country as though it is full of fools!Apparently the proceeds of this sale have been used to buy maize. Well, presumably that maize will be used during the tough time ahead of us but firstly is it enough to feed the country? and when it’s finished the money from the sell of the plane will have fed a few but that is it? I wont repeat my list of suggestions I offered in another article on how the plane could have been made to be more productive, but I leave you gentlemen/ladies to reason this out for yourselves.We now have a curious situation where Kasmbara is adamant that if he is to be accused of plotting to kill Mphwiyo he wants the president and her relatives to be witnesses.I have no doubt in my mind that the president can be a witness in this case but I am disappointed that all this is touching the president. Manondo, one of them anyway who again was arrested in connection  the looting said some of the money  they were stealing was to go to Joyce Banda in USA dollars and then he apparently changed his statement and said Kasambara told him to say so! why is it that all these dirty acts are touching the president?Why has the president been inconsistent about the whole thing one minute she says she knows Mphwiyo’s killer and next minute she does not! she visits Mphwiyo but denies it! now people in her own government are in one way or another implicating her! Is she really clean?Members of her family are said to have become rich over night!If you add all this up it is very difficult to believe that the president is clean of all this.Even if she is clean, why did she allow her family to get involved in the misappropriation of the funds. Do you remember how Joyce Banda sold us a story that when Bingu died he left the government coffers empty. Well its obvious now that this is not true because there had to be money in there for the people to be able steal so much. I figure I recall is 400 billion Malawi kwacha by one person! This is obscene! There must have been money there in the first place so when she was saying to people that there was no money in the coffers she knew otherwise! How can you trust a president like that?

There is another extremely worrying side to the whole scandal. Joyce Banda and her administration have the taken the stand that they are not the first to loot government money, it started with DPP. This ladies and gentlemen is very serious allegation. First of all they are admitting that lootihng has happened.This is extremely bad for them. But let me draw your attention to some facts. When Bingu was president, Joyce Banda was vice president; virtually all her cabinet were DPP ministers.This makes me feel that if PP is saying that this started with DPP, they probably know a thing or two of what was going on in the old DPP.In which case they ought to tell the nation, because the DPP we have now is a new DPP with different president etc……I am very keen for PP to make sure that they prove their allegations because I would like those people to be prosecuted alongside all these PP looters who deserve nothing but jail. Either Joyce Banda and her adminstartion know more in which case we want to know or they are making up stories to try and explain why they stole Malawians’ public funds. Personally I find it too stupid and shallow to say ” we stole because DPP was stealing too” What sort of logic is that.

All in all it seems to me Joyce Banda herself could well be too deeply embroiled in this scandal and that she is finding it very difficult to get tough like she tries to make us believe. When I was in Malawi I heard of a JB son who has accumulated a large number of trucks, (and has no known source of such sums of money,) since mother became president. A sister of JB’s who was in charge of accumulating foreign currency for JB at state house, etc etc There is no smoke without fire. It is impossible for  one to investigate on self especially if the chances are that in one way or another you are implicated. I dare say that donors have seen through this thin camouflage and they are not taking any punches. This now means Malawians are going back to suffering because very simple commodities will be difficult to flow in the country without the cash flow. You see it’s always the poor ordinary Malawian who gets hit first!

In essence I feel that now is time to get another regime which is serious about developing Malawi. The first job they have to do is clean all this, get all the funds back and put them where they should have gone in the first place and punish, demonstrably ALL those involving in this theft so that new ministers do not repeat the same, tighten up the systems for access to government so it does not happen again. I know that a president has enormous amounts of paper work to wade through every single day. I want to know when Joyce Banda gets time to read any of this as she is busy distributing cattle to Malawians?My guess is that Malawi as a nation is auto pilot as the resident is oblivious to her duties!I hope to God we have a break and have a ‘states person’ and I need to add that the next president could be a lady again BUT they must qualify for the job! for a president next time. I admire Joyce Banda’s ambition but that is just about all that is attractive about our president. Malawi is in such serious trouble we need a complete over haul!

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