ACB awaits more files on Malawi grand corruption

By | August 3, 2016

Officials from graft busting body, the Anti Corruption Bureau  (ACB) say they are awaiting more files from the Auditor General before they start prosecution of the  so called K577 billion cashgate case.

ACB Czar Lucas Kondowe: Waiting for more files

ACB Czar Lucas Kondowe: Waiting for more files

ACB director Kondowe said the remaining files include those that have the names of the seven cabinet ministers suspected to have been involved in the scam.

“We expect the files any time soon,” said Kondowe.

His comments come after a section of Malawians heaped blame on President Peter Mutharika for shielding the seven cabinet ministers who are suspected to have benefited from the K577 billion scam during the late president Bingu wa Mutharika  era.

Bingu wa Mutharika, elder brother to the president, is said to have stashed K92 billion in offshore accounts. President Mutharika denies the allegations.

The shooting of former Ministry of Finance budget director Paul Mphwiyo outside the gate of his Area 43 residence in Lilongwe on September 13 2013 is widely believed to have led to revelations of Cashgate.

Former president Joyce Banda ordered an audit which British audit firm Baker Tilly undertook covering the period between April and September 2013. It established that K24 billion was siphoned from public coffers through dubious payments, inflated invoices and goods or services never rendered.

The summary of the  forensic audit conducted by RSM Risk Assurance LLP of the UK covering 2009 to 2014 .

It says the K577 billion that is regularly quoted as unaccounted for is incorrect and has reduced the un-reconciled amount to K236 billion.

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Says the  report in its Executive Summary: “It is likely that the remaining unreconciled amount could be reduced further if additional analysis were to be taken.”

The audit reveals that K83.5 billion was paid to 44 of the businesses which were selected as part of the sample of 50 businesses which matched to the bank transactions.

The report says to date, 13 businesses and K17.08 billion have been subject to review and that of these 13 cases alone have allowed the audit to identify at least $19.6 million in possible savings and recoverable costs.

These are $14.2 million in overpayments for goods and services; one duplicate payment of $5.45 million which the report says should be subject to immediate recovery; and $29 166 overpayment on shipping to wrong locations.

Owing to Cashgate the country’s development partners withdrew their assistance until Malawi improved its public finance management.

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