LILONGWE-(MaraviPost)- The Reserve Bank of Malawi (RBM) on Tuesday, disclosed that about US900 million (MK725 billion ) is being lost yearly through illegal forex externalization.
The central bank Governor Dr. Dalitso Kabambe attributed the financial fraud to politicians’ involvement.
Kabambe disclosed that they are the masters of dubious payments, hence the need for intensification against the vice in the country.
The Governor was addressing the guests in Lilongwe, on Tuesday during the launch of a Tip-Offs Anonymous System.
Dr. Kabambe said the System is established to fight corruption in the commercial bank sector.
The RBM has partnered with Deloitte, the Anti-Corruption Bureau, and the Financial Intelligence Authority. It is to fight fraud and corruption among workers of the banks.
The Governor stressed the need to seal all loopholes to ensure that Malawi does not witness another Cash-gate saga, which devastated the economy.
He observed that the cheques that were used in Cash-gate were RBM (Government) cheques hence there is the need for the Bank to take steps to ensure that pilferage of any Government resources never happens again.
Dr. Kabambe disclosed that the central bank is working on introducing an SMS alert system that will notify all stakeholders, including the Governor, the Finance Minister, the Secretary to the Treasury, line ministers, and other officials to help them trace dubious transactions and to stop them.
“The recent study the central bank carried, found that in 2016 alone, the Malawi Government lost about MK725 billion through illegal forex externalization, which is a big loss to Malawi. We are coming from a dark period of Cash-gate, and it was the worst. It was a tragedy for this nation and Cash-gate has taken this nation backwards, when all other countries in the region and beyond are progressing. As the country is progressing, we need to seal all the loopholes,” the Governor said.
“There are no politicians in the Reserve Bank of Malawi, we are all professionals and what we are saying is that we have to do our work with integrity. If we do that, there is no way we would allow any dubious transactions to take place; either perpetrated by a politician, a business person or any person. They will never use RBM workers for such deals,” Kabambe said.
Implementers of the Tip-Offs Anonymous System, Deloitte, emphasized the need to engage external partners in such initiatives and said that some people would not be comfortable to report fraud to in-house structures.
ACB Director-General, Lucas Kondowe, lauded RBM for the initiative, observed that people have often blamed the Bureau when incidents occur, however said that the fight against corruption cannot be won by the ACB alone.