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I am not involved in MK577 billion cashgate scandal—Malawi Labour Minister Henry Mussa

The Minister of Labour, Manpower and Development Henry Mussa
The Minister of Labour, Manpower and Development Henry Mussa

LILONGWE-(MaraviPost)—Malawi Minister of Labour and Manpower Development Henry Mussa has challenged the authors of the article that appeared in the online media which singled out him as one of the seven cabinet ministers embroiled in the infamous MK577 billion cash gate that they should produce evidence over the claims.Mussa’s reaction comes barely a week after some civil society organizations and human rights activists warned President Peter Mutharika of the pending demonstrations and vigils if he will not fire the named ministers in the said report.

The Malawi News of July 2-8 (Times Group) with the similar article did not mention minister’s names while the online reports singled out Mussa and Minister of Agriculture, George Chaponda out of seven as main culprits in the grand Malawi cashgate report.

The publications of articles on this scandal forced the Office of Auditor General to issue a press statement disputing the claims which was signed by Stephenson Kamphasa-The Auditor General.

The Auditor Office accused the author of the articles particularly in The Malawi News of irresponsible reporting for reflecting gross misrepresentation of facts including deliberate distortion of official’s responses to the writer’s questionnaire.

The Auditor General Kamphasa said his institution was not aware of the author’s sources and where he got the names of the said ministers in the report.

Kamphasa further said that it was incorrect to refer to the MK577 billion which covered 2009 to December 2014 as the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) cash gate.

He hinted that the MK577 billion differences does not imply that there was any fraud or loss of money saying the cash book and bank statements did not reconcile to that magnitude.

But in an exclusive interview with The Maravi Post on Tuesday, The Labour Minister Mussa described the claims made in the article as a joke and vendetta aimed at tarnishing his image.

Mussa who is government Chief Whip in Malawi Parliament and also legislator for Chiladzuru East Constituency wondered as to why out of seven cabinet ministers in the said report, the writer only singled him out together with Chaponda.

The Chiladzuru East Lawmaker who was visually angry during the interviews said clearly that his hands are clean to any allegation on the grand Malawi fraud.

“Out of seven cabinet ministers, why singling Henry Mussa? Where are the other five apart from Chaponda who has been named? This is a joke. I know it is a personal vendetta planned by my detractors to destroy my political career, image and credibility.

“Let me dare the authors of these articles to bring evidence against my alignment into the report. My conscious is telling me that my hands are clean. More importantly, I am shocked considering the fact that since 2009, I was out of cabinet for two years till 2011 and I only served eight months as a cabinet Minister.

“These detractors must go to hell and die there as their evil intentions won’t achieve anything. Let me assure the general public that soon the real culprit of this massive looting will be known to them,” fumed Mussa.

Meanwhile the Auditor General Kamphasa is expected to present details of individuals and companies involved in the cash gate between 2009 and 2014 to Malawi Parliament on Tuesday.

This follows the pressure opposition lawmakers are putting on the Auditors General Office to come clear on matter that MK577 billion (now revised to MK236 billion) could not be reconciled in the government cashbooks.

The lawmakers have been meeting in the capital Lilongwe since May 20, on the 2016/2017 National Budget which was supposed to run for eight weeks.

But the House proceedings have been extended to this coming Friday, July 15, 2016 in a bid to finish tackling bills including land Bill, Water Bill, Money Bill and Access to Information Bill among others.

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