Three people accused of defrauding government of about K97 million Covid-19 funds are appearing before the Chief Resident Magistrate Patrick Chirwa this morning.

The three Martin Mainja, Rashid Mtelera and Dominic Chimaliro are suspected to have conspired to defraud government of K97 million through a contract that was awarded to Mainja’s company to fumigate Capital Hill and Kamuzu Palace.

The contract sum is said to have been on the higher side as the same exercise would have cost government K1.5 million if the exercise was carried by Lilongwe District Health Office.

Mtelera and Chimaliro allegedly approved the contract without following procurement procedures.

The three are answering four counts which are; conspiracy to defraud, abuse of office, flouting procurement procedures and money laundering.

The State has since asked the court for continued detention of the suspects saying the State is still investigating the matter. The State has asked for 14 days to carry out the investigation.

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