Lilongwe City South East lawmaker Ulemu Msungama on Tuesday took the issue of Times Group closure to Parliament accusing the Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA) of harassing private media houses deemed critical of the current administration.

Msungama said this through a question posed to Minister of Information and Communication Technology Nicholas Dausi.

In his question, Msungama inquired what the policy says with regard to closure of media houses that owe MRA.

“I am concerned because the media play a crucial role in disseminating information. Those that expose corruption are being silenced,” said Msungama.

Reacting to this, Dausi blushed off the claims by Msungama.

“This is not about the closure of a media house. This is about the obligation to pay taxes. This House should implore all businesses operating in the country to pay taxes. But regarding this matter, it is in court and let’s wait for now,” Dausi said.

Dausi said Times Group owes MRA K2.5 billion in tax arrears.

Meanwhile Times Group has refuted the claims by Dausi, saying the figures provided by the Minister are inaccurate.

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ZIMENE MUMAKONDA

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