By Patience Abeck
BLANTYRE-(MaraviPost)-FDH Holdings Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Thomson Mpinganjira on Tuesday disputed claims linking him and the bank to politics saying such speculations are putting his life at risk.
Mpinganjira told the news conference in Blantyre that the bank does not fund the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP)’s operation.
His address comes amid trending issues regarding his bank and its business and Malawi politics.
Mpinganjira said he is not a politician and does not harbor any political ambitions.
He has distanced the bank from rumors that it funds the ruling DPP, adding that people from both the ruling and opposition political parties have approached him to join politics but he turned them down.
“Linking me and the bank to politics is putting my life and that of my family members at risk,” worries Mpinganjira.
Below is the full Mpinganjira’s statement:
PRESS BRIEFING ON MISLEADING INFORMATION AFFECTING FDH BANK AND DR. THOMSON MPINGANJIRA BY THE GROUP CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER FOR FDH FINANCIAL HOLDINGS LIMITED
16 July 2019 FDH Boardroom, Blantyre
Good Afternoon Members of the Media,
- Introduction: Thank you for coming. I have called you to set facts clear on the allegations that have been making rounds in both main stream media and social media. It’s a fact that the advent of fake news is here to stay and therefore saw it fit to share with you facts surrounding the false allegations that have been made against me personally and against FDH Bank:
- None Political Stand: As a point of departure, I, Dr. Thomson Mpinganjira has never been involved in politics and hold no ambition to join politics.
- The Malicious Allegations: In recent weeks, the following malicious allegations have been levelled against me personally and against FDH Bank.
- The first allegation is that I fund the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP).
This allegation is false and malicious and simply aims at tarnishing my image and the image of the business of FDH Bank. The facts are clear that I am not involved in politics and I do not fund the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP). As a matter of fact, I have no plans to do that in future.
- The allegation that the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) using the Government machinery channeled funding FDH Bank to corrupt Malawi Electoral Commission staff on 20 May 2019 a day before the polling day. (Misleading information on Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) Current Account held at FDH Bank).
This allegation has been made due to lack of facts. The facts are as follows:
Funds Usage: As was clarified by MEC, the funds (money) were transferred to cater for the various payments MEC makes to suppliers supporting the elections. Indeed, some media houses were also paid from the same account.
Name of the Account: The name of the operating account is Chief Elections Officer (MEC), and this is normal for some Government Agencies and it was authorized by the Treasury in the Ministry of Finance.
Account Opening and Compliance: Please note that this account was opened during the time of Malawi Savings Bank (MSB) and FDH Bank just inherited it. The operating account fully complies with all the legal requirements for operating a bank account in Malawi.
- It alleged that FDH Bank gets all the Government business and all Government account are held at FDH Bank?
This is grossly false and simply aims at tarnishing a Malawian owned bank. The fact of the matter is that amongst the top 5 banks, FDH Bank has the lowest Government business and this you can verify with the Accountant General. Also from a risk management point of view, Government cannot keep all its accounts with one bank or give all the business to one bank as no one bank has capacity to handle a huge volume of Government business.
- The Plan to succeed the President of the Republic of Malawi Professor Arthur Peter Mutharika.
This allegation is baseless and unfounded. All my life I have run a business and I intend to continue and even after my retirement, I plan to play an advisory role to FDH businesses as well as get more involved with the local and religious communities through philanthropic activities. Therefore, there is absolutely no truth in this issue.
- FDH Group Future Plans
As FDH Financial Holdings group, we have ambitious plans to make sure that we reach every corner of the country to make banking accessible to all Malawians and beyond our borders in the next 3 years. This is the reason, while others are closing branches due to costs, we are expanding to drive financial inclusion. We may not make profit in these areas, but our brothers and sisters deserve banking services.
At this point in time let me make a very important announcement. FDH Bank is planning to List on the Malawi Stock Exchange to sell shares in the Bank to ordinary Malawians by 30 June 2020. In simple terms this will enable Malawians to own this Bank. Kindly therefore inform all Malawians to start saving for that great investment opportunity.
My appeal is that let us love our country and ourselves and build a better Malawi together. Let us spend our time encouraging and assisting more Malawians to get into serious sustainable investments that last into future generations.
I thank you and may God bless you and our historically peaceful country, Malawi.