Written by WISE ONE FROM THE EAST
The letter below was probably written around this time way back in 2012 by someone claiming to have been working for the Anti Corruption Bureau (ACB).
Efforts to authenticate the letter and the allegations therein have been frustrated largely by the Anti Corruption Bureau (ACB) which despite several prompts, has failed to categorically:
First contact with the ACB was made in the final days of Mr Alex Nampota’s tenure. This did not yield any fruit.
The ACB was again approached after the appointment of the new ACB Director in the hope that a new broom would want to sweep clean and would change this impudence of treating enquiries made on matters of public interest as bunkum.
The more ACB Directors change it appears, the more things stay the same at the ACB; the recent efforts have so failed to yield anything despite ample proof that the enquiries reached the appropriate officers.
it is only fair that Malawians are, on the way to 2014, accorded an opportunity to read the letter and make their own impartial judgement.
Why am I posting it now? Two reasons, firstly I wanted to give those agitating for dialogue a chance (and they have failed). Their contacting the ACB has returned nix.
Secondly, my publishing it immediately after the change of government in April 2012 had some people condemning me as a “Muhlakho” lunatic aiming to spoil the party, but now if anything, the saying “give a fool enough rope…”, has run its course and no-one can blame me as a party spolier.
With these few remarks, Ladies and Gentlemen, I thank you for granting me this singular honour to present the letter, verbatim.
“Letter to : Honourable Peter Mutharika – Minister of Foreign Affairs
I am a civil servant working for the Anti Corruption Bureau in Malawi and an honest and devoted Christian. I am writing this letter to you because I love this country and I love the president, Ngwazi professor Bingu wa Mutharika.
A few months ago I was part of a team that was assigned to investigate some corrupt practices in government and the private sector. The person and company we were investigating was Mr Abdul Master a prominent businessman in Lilongwe who is having 2 big companies namely Nyiombo Investments and Worldwide Pharmaceuticals. The allegations were many including bribes to government officials, involvement in criminal activities, money laundering, overpayment of invoices and theft.
As the investigation proceeded, we started discovering a lot of things that involved not only Mr Master but a complete chain of corrupt government officials from the lowest positions to the highest level of civil servants, ministers and many more. We were shocked to discover a syndicate that is hiding behind government mechanism and are doing things in the name of our good president. The names that came out included people from the state house and OPC who are part of this syndicate and that is the reason why we have not sent the letter direct to HE because it would not have reached him.
The writing of this letter has come about because I myself have also taken bribes from Mr Master to keep my mouth shut which was a big mistake but very tempting one and I cannot live with this guilt. Let me begin telling you some of the issues for each company:-
Nyiombo Investments is the largest supplier of fertilizers in Malawi. We discovered a lot of irregularities in the supply of fertilizer starting from quality, undersupply of fertilizer while fully invoiced, and overpayment of invoices. We discovered that in their award process, high level officials had been corrupted to make sure that Nyiombo got the biggest chunk of the order to the extent that one official even mentioned “we are ordered to give Nyiombo from the highest office in the country” We also discovered that at one time Nyiombo delivered 10,000 tonnes of fertilsers without a tender authorized by the then deputy minister, Honourable Frank Mwenefumbo at a very exorbitant price and in return payment of millions were given to Honourable Mwenefumbo to build his lodge in Karonga.
We found evidence linking Mr Master for being involved in the fire that gutted at the ministry of Agriculture after a forensic audit had been ordered which would have exposed all the overpayments and double payments of the invoices to Nyiombo Investments.
We also found evidence of under-deliveries, late deliveries and expeditious process of payment of documents with lots of shortcuts of government procedures. Wherever we checked, we found very supportive government officials who were ready to talk unofficially about seeing a lot of people getting envelopes with cash payments but were too scared to speak openly out of fear to being fired.
We also found out that Mr Master is intimidating and threatening people that he is the president’s best friend and if they did not co-operate they would be moved out or find themselves jobless to the extent that government officials including PSs and ministers will get phone calls from party officials and high level civil servants including the chief of staff and even the Chief secretary himself.
This company has become the largest supplier of medicines in Malawi if not the only one at times because of corrupt practices. Mr Master again has a whole chain of corrupt officials who are cutting corners everywhere to award contracts to his company Worldwide. Registration of drugs is done in a very short notice while the process is quite long and difficult. Mr Master is currently building a house for Mr Aaron Sosola, the Registerar of Poisons Board. The company also imports a lot of unregistered drugs mostly very substandard quality including products like IVs which were found very defective and are killing people in the hospitals. Mr Master was asked to collect all all the IVs worth over MWK 200 million, but he managed to suppress it.
Again Mr Master’s name has been linked with so many reports including the ones from SWAp donors connecting him to corrupt practices and worse connecting him to a fire that occurred and burned the whole Central Medical Stores in 2009 after a forensic report was ordered to investigate all the irregularities at the Central Medical Stores. During our investigation we found substantial evidence of corruption, overpayments of invoices and again a whole chain of corrupt officers which are protected by high level politicians. We also learnt to believe that the thefts at Central Medical Stores are connected to Mr Master as products are going in circles in and out and are sold again back to central medical stores.
Mr Master is dealing in the black market in Malawi and in the last one year has made a fortune taking advantage of the shortage of foreign exchange. Having millions of dollars in foreign accounts he sells the dollars in the black market and remits it back at the official rate through the imports of duty free fertilizer and drugs. He also overvalues invoices to the extent that some are even higher value than his selling prices to government. We have found bank statements with very large cash deposits which could not be explained through any legal means of trading but rather money laundering. Mr Master has a whole chain of corrupt people in the Reserve Bank and the commercial banks that are laundering the money for him and are getting commissions from the illegal deals. He also has full protection by the Malawi Police and National Intelligence through bribes.
During our investigations, we received large sums of monies to keep quiet. We received phone calls from high level politicians and even from our own bosses to make sure that Mr Master’s companies and himself are cleared. Mr Master through his influence and threats are managing to manipulate everyone and plant fear in our minds to the extent that if I expose myself, I fear for my life. We have heard statements from so many people like
We have gathered written evidence which I am keeping in a safe place just in case something happens to me. My conscience is killing me. Every day I look at my kids I know that I am just as corrupt as all the people that I have investigated. It is also sad that in such a peaceful Malawi we have a syndicate “Mafia” headed by one individual who is hiding behind the president and other politicians in Malawi. Mr Master has become so powerful that he now believes he is the president of this country and he is untouchable.
I know Honourable minister that you are an honest person who is going to lead our country and I truly believe that you will not allow Malawi to be drawn into western type of white-collar crime with having syndicates of gangsters creating fear in the Malawian citizenry. Let us not allow one individual spoil the name of Malawi and its people. I wrote this letter to you because I cannot trust anyone and I know you will put an end to all of this.
The sad part is that Mr Master is bragging around that he is also behind you Sir and that he will finance your presidential campaign in 2014. It also came to our knowledge that Mr Master is financing Right Honourable Joyce Banda through Honourable Khumbo Kachale and cash deposits into Justice Richard Banda’s account with NBS account no 0020307679017.
Your obedient servant
Unknown ‘ACB officer’”