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Forensic audit exonerates Kabambe, Mwanamveka, Mathanga from “NIR misreporting” allegations

BLANTYRE-(MaraviPost)-It has been revealed that the MK300 million Ernest and Young (EY) Forensic Audit Report which was kept under wraps for over a year since its submission in June 2022, exonerated opposition Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) gurus including Joseph Mwanamvekha (former finance minister), Dalitso Kabambe (former Reserve Bank of Malawi Governor), and former RBM Deputy Governor Henry Mathanga from allegations of doctoring Net International Reserves (NIR) figures.

The three were arrested in November 2021 following allegations by the Leader of Government Business in Parliament, Minister of Homeland Security at the time, Chimwendo Banda, that Mwanamvekha and Kabambe were cooking up economic figures.

However, the Forensic Audit Report by EY did not establish the so-called “cooking up of economic figures” allegation by the three.

The Forensic Audit Report which we have seen faulted the absence of a consolidated registrar of agreements in the RBM as the main reason that led “Departments responsible for compiling and submitting data for computing NIR to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), omit some loan balances”.

Henry Mathanga

The Report lists the three Departments as Financial Markets, Economic Policy Research, Accounting and Finance.

The Audit Report therefore recommended that RBM maintain a consolidated registrar of all agreements to avoid this challenge recurring in the future.

They also recommend that the number of Departments involved in NIR calculation and submission to the IMF should be reduced from three to one.

What this Forensic Audit Report has established is that Mwanamvekha, Kabambe, and Mathanga were not in any way involved in calculating and submitting NIR figures to the IMF as Minister of Finance, Governor, and Deputy Governor.

It was the responsibility of the three departments in the RBM, namely, Financial Markets, Economic Policy Research, Accounting and Finance.

According to one law expert, what this means is that “the court should be moved to clear the three on this allegation, because not only will Government lose the MK300 million they have paid EY for the Forensic Audit Report, they will also have to pay the three for all the costs and damages this case may cause to them”.

Furthermore, he adds that “If indeed Government is still interested in pursuing this case in court even after the Forensic Audit has laid it bare that the three were not involved in compiling and submitting NIR figures to the IMF, then it means that they should also arrest the current Governor, and the two Ministers of Finance from the Tonse Alliance Government because as the Forensic Audit shows, the challenge of omitting some balances by the three Departments continued under the current Administration”.

Mwanamveka warns of economic instability

It would, therefore, amount to selective justice if only office bearers from the previous administration were arrested while those from the current administration were left scot-free.

The revelations coming out of the forensic audit, clearly show that the arrest of the three was merely a political witchhunt.

Further to that it is also clear that lack of experience and understanding of financial systems led to the cancelation of the Extended Credit Facility and now they are failing to have a new one in place due to their lack of fiscal and economic management of the country.

Maravi Post Reporter
Maravi Post Reporter
Op-Ed Columnists, Opinion contributors and one submissions are posted under this Author. In our By-lines we still give Credit to the right Author. However we stand by all reports posted by Maravi Post Reporter.
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