President Lazarus Chakwera during his 7th national address on 21st February,2021

BLANTYRE-(MaraviPost)—Malawians will have to wait longer to know the results of the audit into K6.2 billion meant for Covid-19 fight as President Lazarus Chakwera projected that the audit will take one month and it will cover the period between September and December 2020.

Making his seventh National Address on the War on Covid-19 on Sunday evening, the President said the audit will focus on validation of the report from the Presidential Task Force on Covid-19 and probe of the expenditures made.

He said: “The second [part] will focus on investigating how every kwacha was spent, by whom and whether the spending was lawful.

“Upon completion of the independent audit, any public officers associated with wrongdoing will be dealt with and face the law.”

Chakwera, who ordered mass interdiction of controlling officers involved in the Covid-19 funds scandal, was accompanied by Secretary to the President and Cabinet Zangazanga Chikhosi.

Chikhosi confirmed that  interdictions of cluster heads the President directed were effected.

The President had directed Chikhosi to interdict controlling officers and heads of Covid-19 response clusters for failing to submit weekly expenditure reports on their allocation of the K17.5 billion Treasury disbursed last month.

The controlling officers and heads of clusters were also faulted for presenting expenditure reports void of supporting documents to the Presidential Task Force on Covid-19 regarding how they spent their share of the K6.2 billion.

Police last week arrested 16 employees of the Department of Disaster Management Affairs (Dodma) in relation to the management of the K6.2 billion response funds.

The President’s order to interdict en masse the controlling officers, who include heads of government ministries, departments and agencies such as principal secretaries (PSs), district commissioners, chief executive officers of councils, has sparked debate regarding the legality.

In apparent direct response to the sentiments, Chakwera said he tasked the Office of the President and Cabinet to consult with the Solicitor General, the acting Auditor General “and others” to ensure that the interdiction letters were written in a mannercompliant with the law.

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