Malawi Congress Party (MCP) and Leader of opposition Dr. Lazarus Chakwera has accused President Professor Arthur Peter Mutharika and his government of lacking transparency on issues affecting the nation.
Chakwera cited the sale of Malawi Savings Bank (MSB) and how the government handled the MK577 billion forensic audit reports, saying these two issues show that the DPP regime cannot be trusted.
“It was clear from the report of the Budget and Finance Committee of Parliament that Parliament was not against the sale of MSB, but questioned the manner, motive and methodology of the said sale. Several recommendations were made in order that issues of transparency and accountability would be really addressed. While the peoples’ representatives understood the reasons given for the transaction, we were surprised at the President’s tokenism, first in feigning suspension of the sale while at the same time technocrats were finalising the same immediately Parliament passed the budget.
“This seriously puts into question issues of governance in this nation because it is public knowledge that the bank was deliberately run down by party functionaries so that in the end it would be sold for a song. So while it may seem legit that government should not be running such businesses as a bank, why is the same government talking about establishing a development bank? This government needs to know that there is no place to hide, it has an expiry date, and Malawians cannot always be taken for a ride,” said Chakwera in an exclusive interview.
Commenting on the forensic report, Chakwera said it was data analysis not an audit report.
“It is not a forensic audit report. It was a data analysis of the K92 billion ($204.4 million) audit query which then showed that there is K577 billion ($1.3 million) necessitating forensic audit.
“When that audit report comes out, Parliament will debate and take necessary action. So, the presentation of an audit data analysis as an audit report is a misrepresentation. If anything, that data analysis report only confirms that this government cannot be trusted,” said Chakwera.
Chakwera also trashed claims that the opposition were just opposing for sake of opposing, saying the opposition represented the voice of Malawians.
“If you believe government’s assertion, then you disagree with those Malawians who say that our critique of the budget as well as contributions on the same had a lot of substance. Eventually, Malawians will be the best judges,” he said.