The Accountant General was, on July 12, 2016 anticipated to present, to parliament through the Public Accounts Committee, the details of the K577 billion cashgate audit report, but shelved the release seeking the Attorney General’s chambers to give legal opinion first on the implications of the move.
In his advice, the Attorney General cautioned the Accountant General from releasing the names pending completion of investigations.
It was indeed more than necessary that the Attorney General, as a chief legal counsel for the government, gives his assessment-based advice on the possible undesired and backfiring consequences of publicizing the names while investigations are not exhaustive yet.
While I find the legal advice by the Attorney General to be entirely routine and unobjectionable, I equally find its quality to be serving the interests of corruption more than the public interests. What I must point out here, both to the Attorney General and everybody else, is that in Malawi there is no law for the rich and politically connected and another for the poor and vulnerable.
We are not very far away from 2014 when names of individuals and companies that were involved in the Cashgate section investigated by Baker Tilly were aired with zeal on Galaxy radio, a media institution owned and controlled by the Mutharika family. Following this naming and shaming [which was done prior to complete investigations], selected culprits were pursued swiftly than it could be. Additionally, they were, in way, prevented from continuing with their siphones.
Today, the ministers who are speculated in the current report being hidden under the DPP’s private parts are continuing siphoning the public money because they are not being named for appropriate action. My survey on the conduct of the sitting regime on this matter yields that the power holders are bent to circumvent the rule of law.
During the 2014 election campaign, the DPP promised the people of Malawi that, once in power, they would release the names of all those people implicated in the financial scandal. Two years down the line, the administration has grown cold feet and is wary of releasing the names. This is not only buffling but also adds kinetics to the swirling rumour mill that the list contains names of influential individuals that are manning the DPP administration.
Because of the factual rumour in question, the administration is reluctant to publish the names for fear of the embarrassment and backlash that such exposure could bring. Resultantly, Malawians are being denied their right to know who abused their public monies and to hold their leaders accountable.
The solemn promise from the prosecutorial authorities (herein the ACB and police) to fervently pursue the suspects and to ensure that justice is not only done, but also seem to be done, is neither here nor there. We have these vultures, pigs and hyenas molesting our justice system without vasseline.
Today, President Mutharika is claiming to be non cognizant of the culprits’ identities yet the names-filled audit report is within the government system. We are talking of an audit report that is under the custody of the Auditor General. In case everybody has forgotten, the AG is appointed by and submissive to the State President. It is possible then for the AG to have the report exclussive to his office only denying the president such knowledge? Are we Malawians very much ready to be fooled this much?
I, for one, am not ready to be part of the victims of such foolish taactics by this cunning regime. I refuse to be fooled. At this juncture, I would like to commend Hon. Kamulepo Kaluwa for standing firm to the ground of truth and courage. The President half full knowledge of the names and must discharge his duty and let the prosecutorial institutions discarge their duties freely and independently.
We must also remind president Mutharika that he himself also executed his own Cashgate in the first year of his term by cancelling loans over MK6 billion that his compatriots and friends owed Malawi Savings Bank (MSB). Just like his late brother [Bingu] who has a MK91 billion loot appended to his name Peter Mutharika who had, during his campaign, promised Malawians an incorruptible government has been found to posses hands way too dirty to champion clean governance.